This just happened at approximately 3:50pm Eastern time, Sunday, September 4, 2016. I was sitting in the parking lot of the local grocery store this afternoon — the Food Lion in Berryville, Virginia — waiting for my wife to come out. The windows were down, and our dog was on my lap when I heard a popping sound. I turned around in my seat and saw a few people running away from the store, ducking behind cars, and looking back over their shoulders. There didn’t seem to be too much of a commotion, so I brushed it off thinking maybe it was a car backfiring.
Within a minute, my wife walked out of the store with her cart, telling me that there was something going on – one guy had another guy pinned to the ground. Nothing seemed amiss so I got out of the car and cautiously walked up to the store.
All of the smartphone warriors had their cameras going as I entered the front of the store, walked to the other side, and stood in the doorway about 15 feet from the two guys, one of whom was being pinned to the ground by another guy.
Many of you will say this was unwise, but adrenaline was flowing and I really did feel safe as I approached. I wouldn’t have purposely put myself in harm’s way.
What exactly happened was unclear because everyone there was in hysterics, but what I did gather is that the pinned guy did indeed have a gun and had fired a shot – not at anyone or anything in particular.
About two minutes later, the cops arrived. The first officer ran up from the right with and AR in his hands. Another officer showed up from behind us, Glock with a rail light in his hand. The officers subdued the guy and the samaritan hopped up off of him and backed up.
As I prepared to head back to my car, I saw one of the officers holding a small semi-auto pistol with a black frame and a stainless slide, now unloaded with the mag out and the slide locked back. I couldn’t get a detailed view of the gun, but it looked like a .380 pocket pistol.
With half a dozen cop cars and twice as many officers now on the scene, I went back to the car and we headed home.
Now that I’m at home, safe and sound, I think of all the people who feel like it will never happen in their town. Berryville is a small town outside of Winchester, Virginia, in the Shenandoah Valley just a few miles from the West Virginia state line. Most folks wouldn’t have ever imagined something like this happening at their local grocery store.
Truth be told, I didn’t think it would happen either, but that doesn’t mean I wasn’t prepared. I had a S&W 638 revolver in my front pocket when we went out to the flea market that day. I wasn’t expecting trouble there or at the grocery store, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
To sum the situation up: it won’t happen here … until it does.