3. New firearms policy
at Wal-Mart lets district managers decide
Member A.L. Soots relays his experience at the Fairlawn Wal-Mart:
Mr. Van Cleave,
About a month ago, a relative of mine was in the Wal-Mart in
Fairlawn. He was doing some shopping while open carrying his weapon.
After being in the store for a little while, he was confronted by the
assistant store manager, Jim Hancock, who told him that he was
breaking the law by carrying his firearm, and asked him to remove it
in the store and let him take it. When my relative said no, the
manager told him that he could either go with him to the office and
"straighten this out" or be prosecuted.
He said, "OK," not knowing what he was going to be prosecuted for.
When they got to the back of the store, the assistant manager then
called the Pulaski Sheriff's Department and put the deputy on speaker
phone and asked what my relative could be charged with. When the
deputy told him that there was no law being broken, he then hung up
and started telling my relative that "things were going to change
when the next president was elected...and people like my relative
were going to lose their rights to carry weapons."
When my relative wanted to leave, he was told that he had to write a
report. After the report was written and signed, he then told him to
leave the property. There were witnesses to this. After I talked with
Dave Knight about this, he called and talked with the store manager
who told him that her store employees would "be educated" and that
they weren't to bother anyone carrying a weapon in the store.
Well, last night (August 28, 2007) I was in the same store to
purchase some ammo for a CCW class that I was teaching. I was in the
store with a friend of mine. We walked straight from the front door
to the sporting goods department (open carrying). After standing at
the counter with no help for a few minutes we were confronted by the
SAME assistant manager and another employee.
Mr. Hancock told us that we were not welcome in the store while
carrying a weapon and he wanted us OFF THE PROPERTY NOW. I asked him
if this was store policy
or his policy
. He said it didn't matter, and
that if we did not leave, we would be charged with trespassing.
We turned to walk out of the store and Mr. Hancock followed us on our
heels all the way out. I stopped at one point to ask him why he was
following us. After we left I made a call to the district supervisor,
Terry Sartain, and left a message at his office because it was after
hours. I spoke with Mr. Sartain this morning and he told me that the
local managers and he were working on a new firearms policy
He said that they had cleared it with the home office and the legal
department and that they were OK to change the policy
in his store to
NO FIREARMS...NO CONCEALED OR OPEN CARRY!! He said that the signs
were being printed and would be posted in a couple of days.
The stores affected by this change are Fairlawn, Christiansburg, and
Salem, with Roanoke stores to follow. So, it looks like Wal-Mart is
falling. What do we do about this, or is there anything that we can
(Update: I just spoke with someone at corporate and was told by them
that the new Wal-Mart corporate policy
on firearms is to let district
managers decide on the firearms policy
for their stores. It is in
their hands and out of corporate.)
I will let everyone know when the signs get posted (if they get
posted). There are many different ways we may choose to respond, I
will let you know what we suggest in a future update.