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Walgreens employee shoots pregnant woman accused of shoplifting

A woman is in critical condition and required an emergency C-section after being shot by a Walgreens employee who was maced during a confrontation.
A sign outside a Walgreens Pharmacy in Pittsburgh
Posted at 10:49 AM, Apr 14, 2023

A woman who was pregnant is in critical condition and required an emergency C-section after she was shot by a Walgreens employee who was maced Wednesday night during a confrontation over reportedly stolen items. 

Homicide Unit detectives with the Metro Nashville Police Department are investigating the shooting, which happened outside of a Walgreens store in the 2500 block of Gallatin Avenue just before 8 p.m. 

The preliminary investigation of the shooting shows that a 21-year-old Walgreens team leader at that store was informed by a coworker that two females were stealing items from the store. He told police he saw the women putting items into a shopping cart and personal bag before exiting the store without paying.

The employee also told officers that he was recording the women with his cellphone as he followed them out of the store to the vehicle they were unloading the items into. The report from police says he went to the back of the vehicle, and one of them began spraying mace at him.

The employee says he pulled out a semi-automatic pistol as he was being maced and began firing shots, claiming he was in fear because he didn't know if they were armed.

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The women took off in the car, and the employee called 911 from inside the Walgreens store. 

A woman, 34, was shot during the altercation and taken to General Hospital by the other woman, who drove away after dropping her off and remains unidentified by police. The injured woman, who was pregnant, was transported by ambulance to Vanderbilt University Medical Center for treatment.

An emergency C-section was performed, and the infant was not injured by the gunshots. 

Both the woman and her baby are in critical but stable condition, says police.

The employee cooperated with detectives during the investigation. Investigators seized his gun used in the shooting and have taken possession of his cell phone.

Detectives will share the results of their investigation with the District Attorney's Office to determine if the employee will face charges.

Walgreens provided the following statement Thursday in regard to the shooting: "The safety of our patients, customers and team members is our top priority, and violence of any kind will not be tolerated at our stores. We take this matter seriously and are cooperating with local authorities."

This article was written by Craig Anderson for Scripps News Nashville.