Armed Citizen Stops Possible Copycat Shooter

Less then a week after the bloody rampage shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Ohio — which left a total of 31-people dead and scores wounded — another possible attack at a Walmart store in Springfield, Missouri was miraculously avoided thanks to a “good guy with a gun.”

The incident began when a man wearing body armor and carrying a rifle walked into a Walmart store located at 3150 W. Republic Rd.

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However, before the copycat gunmen could repeat the carnage at the El Paso Walmart. He was confronted by an off-duty fireman with a concealed carry permit, who quickly ordered the would-be assailant to “stand down” – holding him at gunpoint until police arrived.

The suspect identified as 20-year-old Dmitriy Andreychenko was immediately taken into custody and charged with suspicion of making a terrorist threat.

The Springfield News-Leader quoted Lt. Mike Lucas as saying that the suspect arrived at the Walmart store Thursday afternoon, in full combat gear, including body armor and military-style clothing and holding a “tactical rifle,” along with another firearm and more than 100 rounds of ammunition.

A surveillance photo captures the suspect entering the store with what appears to be an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, before being stopped by the off-duty firemen.

Later, Lt. Mike Lucas with Springfield Police confirmed it was a white man in his 20s, armed with a rifle that was taken into custody.

“His intent was not to cause peace or comfort to anybody that was in the business. In fact, he’s lucky to be alive still to be honest,” he told reporters.

Lucas said Thursday evening that no shots were fired and nobody was injured. However, the man is still in custody.

“His intent obviously was to cause chaos here, and he did that,” Lucas added.

Walmart issued a statement on Friday confirming the incident, and praising both the police department for their swift response and the heroic off duty fireman who perhaps saved countless lives.

Walmart spokeswoman LeMia Jenkins said, “This was a reckless act designed to scare people, disrupt our business and it put our associates and customers at risk.”

Adding, “We applaud the quick actions of our associates to evacuate customers from our store, and we’re thankful no one was injured.”

The Greene County prosecutor is reviewing the case to determine possible charges, police spokeswoman Jasmine Bailey said.

Dee Wampler, a longtime Springfield defense attorney, and former Greene County prosecutor said that carrying an assault weapon in Springfield and in public isn’t necessarily a crime

Adding, “If he was looking at people in a menacing way or if he was saying something to other customers that was frightening to them, those would be factors” and could result in felony charges.

Missouri as of January 2017, doesn’t require a permit to either openly carry a sidearm or conceal carry a firearm for individuals 19-years or older. There are approximately 30 states that have open carry laws for handguns, rifles, and shotguns within public areas that don’t require a permit.

As for background checks in the wake of the recent mass shootings, the President has just announced that he’s seriously considering a more comprehensive approach to background checks.

“Serious discussions are taking place between House and Senate leadership on meaningful Background Checks. I have also been speaking to the NRA, and others, so that their very strong views can be fully represented and respected. Guns should not be placed in the hands of….”.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 9, 2019

Another tweet followed, addressing the issue of mental health.

“Mentally ill or deranged people. I am the biggest Second Amendment person there is, but we all must work together for the good and safety of our Country. Common sense things can be done that are good for everyone!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 9, 2019

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