SPRINGFIELD, Mo.— Wal-mart announced Friday that it would stop selling violent video games but keep selling guns. The company made the announcement the same day a man in Missouri was arrested after entering a Wal-mart store with ammo, a rifle and body armor.
According to the Associated Press, the company has told employees to remove any marketing material, turn off or unplug video game consoles that show violent games and to monitor and turn off any violence depicted on screens in its electronics departments. The AP said they were also told to turn off hunting season videos in the sporting goods department where guns are sold.
From the Associated Press:
“We’ve taken this action out of respect for the incidents of the past week,” said spokeswoman Tara House in an email to The Associated Press on Friday.
The company’s policy on sales of video games that depict violence has not changed, nor has its policy on gun sales.
Following the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, Walmart Inc. banned sales of firearms and ammunition to people younger than 21. It had stopped selling AR-15s and other semi-automatic weapons in 2015, citing weak sales.
There is no known link between violent video games and violent acts.
Meanwhile, in Springfield, Mo., a 20-year-old man was arrested after going through a local Wal-mart Neighborhood Market with a rifle, body armor and military fatigues. NBC affiliate KY3 reported that Dmitriy N. Andreychenko was booked on suspicion of first-degree making a terroristic threat. He had been recording himself on his cell phone while he walked through the store.
A store manager had pulled a fire alarm to evacuate the store. Andreychenko was held at gunpoint by a former firefighter until the police arrived.
Lieutenant Mike Lucas told the TV station that “his intent was not to cause peace or comfort…He’s lucky he’s alive still, to be honest.”