Suspect killed after firing at trooper outside Walmart, police say

- A man has died after a police-involved shooting in Lehigh County late Wednesday night outside of a Walmart.

The shooting occurred in the parking lot of the Walmart on Mill Creek Road in Lower Macungie Township around 9 p.m.

Just before the incident, police say the suspect entered the Walmart wearing a “life-like” mask and a wig, and filled up a cart. A loss prevention officer in the store eventually spotted the suspect and noticed he matched the description of a suspect wanted in a theft from another Walmart location in Schuylkill County in March.

In that incident, police say the suspect had pulled a gun on a loss prevention officer who attempted to stop him.

On Wednesday night the loss prevention officer notified state police of the suspicious person wearing a mask.

When the trooper entered the store, police believe the suspect spotted the trooper and abandoned his cart. The trooper caught up with the suspect as he got to the front door and asked him to stop.

That’s when investigators say the suspect ran into the parking lot and pulled a handgun from his waist, turning and firing one shot at the trooper as he got to his vehicle.

The trooper then returned fire once the suspect was in his vehicle, striking the suspect multiple times. The suspect was later pronounced dead at the scene.

Officers recovered a pistol at the scene. The trooper has been placed on administrative duty pending further investigation.

In a Thursday morning press conference officials stated the preliminary investigation indicated the use of force was justified.

Neither the suspect of the officer has been identified at this time.

The Walmart was evacuated following the incident and has since reopened. 

State Police in Fogelsville are investigating the incident along with the Lehigh County District Attorney’s Office.

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