A loss prevention employee at a Target in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina found a loaded handgun in the toy aisle. Police have since released an image of a man they are wanting to identify in relation to the situation (above image insert left).
According to WMBF, the gun (above image insert right) was found in plain sight on top of a superhero Playskool toy box. When the employee found the item, he thought it was a toy until he examined further and discovered it was very much real. This horrible combination of a loaded handgun being left in a toy aisle has many speculating that the action was more than a coincidence.
Shopper Kennedy McClain said, “I don’t think someone would accidentally drop off a gun. I think he purposely left it there for a child to pick up and think, ‘Oh it’s a toy gun,’ and accidentally point it at somebody and it goes off.”
A police report mentioned a suspicious male, presumably the one in the photo provided, walking up and down each toy aisle including the one in which the gun was found.
This incident follows a report of gun activists openly carrying assault rifles at a Texas Target while shopping for baby clothes. In response, the group Moms Demand Action For Gun Sense In America filed a petition asking that Target create a gun policy for its store arguing that they have no place in stores that American moms frequent.
CJ Grisham, President of Open Carry Texas, the folks responsible for the demonstration at the Texas Target, wrote to Buzzfeed about the South Carolina incident:
“I wouldn’t doubt if a gun control extremist planted the gun there to further his agenda of blaming gun owners for deaths of children. Whoever did it is a despicable excuse for a human being and should be charged with attempted murder and fried in a chair.”
Erika Soto Lamb, the founder of Moms Demand, replied:
“The insinuation that an organization devoted to the prevention of gun violence would plant a loaded gun in the toy aisle of Target is utterly ridiculous. Moms Demand Action is solely focused on the safety and security of our families and communities. Only one organization has a history of bringing loaded guns into Target — it’s not us.”
WMBF spoke with Fletcher Armstrong III, a Concealed Weapons Permit instructor with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, who had 4 simple steps to teach to children if they happen to come across a gun. “Stop. Don’t touch. Leave the area, and tell an adult,” he said.