Suprising update posted next page.
We live in a location in Tennessee where we have easy access to six different Wal-Marts and two Sams Clubs in TN and VA.
I work third shift and doing so means I usually shop in the early morning hours usually between 2 and 4 am. This morning my wife and I decided to go to the new Wal-Mart on Market St in Johnson City TN for the first and possibly the last time. This is a weekly trip and we usually spend in upwards of $200. As usual at Wal-Mart the greeter was pleasant and asked how we were doing. We went straight to women’s clothing; I was just standing there while my wife was looking.
After a second or two a cashier according to the little yellow tag walked up to me and said rather abruptly “Sir we don’t allow pistols in the store” I advised her I have a valid TN Handgun Carry Permit. At which point she replied “don’t matter you have to leave”. Under TN law if asked to leave I have to so I did.
I have carried in the five other Wal-Marts and both Sams and have never had any problems. I sometimes get a curious look, once a stocker asked how she could go about getting a permit. But nothing like this morning.
I have 2 problems with what happened this morning as follows:
First I have several friends that work at local Wal-Marts and am aware that it is your companies policy that cashiers are not to confront any customer, even shoplifting has to be witnessed by a manager before loss prevention can approach a customer. So why did she say anything at all to me. Far more bizarre to me was the obvious plain clothed loss prevention guy was standing there talking to the cashier as I was walking out. Why was he too much of a coward to say anything, and why are you even paying him.
Second I have been fingerprinted, background checked, and trained above and beyond the level that the state requires. It is not someone who is a law-abiding citizen that legally carries a firearm secured in a holster that you have to fear. The ones you want to fear are the criminals who walk through the door with a gun in their hand intent on robbery or killing.
You can check it online now; the crime rates are steadily climbing in the Johnson City area. Would you want to walk around in Johnson City with your family at 3am with out some form of protection? The average response time for the JCPD is four minutes by then it is too late, also the JCPD qualifies with their side arms 1hr every other month and most don’t practice anymore than that. So am I willing to bet my and my families lives on someone who is four minutes away with 6hrs training a year? I would think not.
Finally keep in mind that there are over 200,000 carry permits in this state. Also keep in mind that Wal-Mart is no longer very competitive, your prices are often beat by grocery stores and we have three new Targets in the area now.
I understand there was a recent very near tragedy in a Sams in North Carolina; this was caused by an act of blatant stupidity. Please don’t let the actions of one make us all appear bad to you. Also remember a couple years back a Wal-Mart employee who was being stabbed to death was saved by a customer who was legally carrying in I believe Arizona.
I am sending this letter through the website however I will also call the manager of this store during regular hours today.
Piney Flats, TN