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A security guard at a Nashville Kroger fired his gun after a driver shot him with a flare gun following a shoplifting incident inside the store late Tuesday.
The security guard had been working at the retail outlet when he witnessed Christopher Walpole, 30, leaving the store with what looked like stolen items hidden in his pants, officials said.
The security guard followed Walpole out to the parking lot to take a photo and bar him from the store. Walpole allegedly resisted and got into the passenger side of a tan Ford Explorer.
The scene following the alleged shoplifting incident inside a Kroger in Nashville.
(City of Nashville)
As the security guard was trying to deploy pepper spray, the driver of the vehicle backed out to flee and shot the guard in the chest with a flare gun. The security guard, thinking he had been shot, fired his weapon, striking Walpole in the back.
Nashville police arrived on the scene. Walpole told police he was indeed at the Kroger store and owned a flare gun, but was not the person who fired it, officials said. When police asked who did, Walpole said he didn’t know.
Walpole told officers that the man who was driving the vehicle had told him to wait before calling the police because he had outstanding warrants and needed time to get away, according to officials.
Walpole was taken to Vanderbilt Medical Center to be treated for his injuries. There are no charges against him at this time.
The security guard, meanwhile, sustained burn injuries from the flare gun. He was treated at a local hospital and released.
Authorities said the driver is a White male in his 30s. He was wearing loose-fitting jeans and a black t-shirt. They said a White female was also inside the vehicle at the time of the shooting.
Anyone with information about the suspect is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 615-742-7463.
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