Atlanta, GA

Atlanta-area supermarket cashier shot to death after argument with customer over mask

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An Atlanta-area sheriff's deputy was shot and a woman died Monday after a shootout at a grocery store that stemmed from an argument over wearing a mask, authorities said.

A DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office Reserve Unit deputy, a 30-year law enforcement veteran who is retired from the agency, was shot twice and was listed in stable condition, DeKalb County Sheriff Melody Maddox said during a news conference. The suspect, identified as Victor Lee Tucker, 30, was struck multiple times and taken to a hospital, authorities said.

He was listed in stable condition.

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<strong>An Atlanta-area sheriff's deputy was shot Monday when a man opened fire at the Big Bear supermarket during a dispute with a woman, afox news

Tucker was checking out of the Big Bear Supermarket near The Gallery at South DeKalb mall in the Atlanta suburb of Decatur just after 1 p.m. when he got into an argument with a female cashier about his face mask, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said.

He left the store without completing his purchase and "immediately" returned, authorities said.

"There was some confrontation, an argument… in reference to the wearing of a mask at which time the subject pulled out a weapon and shot the cashier at the location," Maddox said.

The cashier was taken to a hospital where she was pronounced dead. A second cashier was grazed by a bullet and treated at the scene. Maddox said she did not know what the grocery store's mask policy was at the time of the shooting.

"We understand that with the wearing of the masks and the not wearing the mask, people will have their own opinions," she said.

The reserve deputy, who was employed as a part-time security guard with the store, intervened during the shooting and returned fire, the sheriff's office said.

"He is a stand-out professional individual and he loves what he does," Maddox said. "As you can see, he's continuing to do what he does to make sure that everybody is safe, once again, as they go in and out of that store."

Two responding DeKalb County Police Department officers arrested Tucker as he was attempting to crawl out of the front door of the supermarket, the GBI said.

Members of the DeKalb sheriff's reserve unit consist of retired deputies, police officers and citizens who donate a minimum of 20 hours of volunteer time each month state, juvenile and superior courts, the county jail or community relations office, according to the Sheriff's Office website.

The DeKalb County Police Department will be handling the arrest warrants for Tucker, the GBI said.

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