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Walmart returns guns and ammunition to U.S. store displays

UPDATED: Fri., Oct. 30, 2020

A woman pulls groceries from a cart to her vehicle outside of a Walmart store in Pearl, Miss., on March 31, 2020.  (Julio Cortez)
A woman pulls groceries from a cart to her vehicle outside of a Walmart store in Pearl, Miss., on March 31, 2020. (Julio Cortez)
By Anne D’Innocenzio Associated Press

NEW YORK – Walmart has reversed course, announcing it is returning ammunition and firearms to their displays in its U.S. stores.

On Thursday the nation’s largest retailer said it had removed the items from displays due to “civil unrest” in some areas of the country. Guns and ammunition, however, had remained for sale at the stores, just not visible to shoppers.

But on Friday, Walmart said the items had been restored to displays because the unrest has remained isolated.

The moves come after several days of protests, vandalism and an overnight curfew in Philadelphia after police fatally shot a Black man with a history of mental health problems.

“After civil unrest earlier this week resulted in damage to several of our stores, consistent with actions we took over the summer, we asked stores to move firearms and ammunition from the sales floor to a secure location in the back of the store in an abundance of caution, ” Walmart said in a statement. “As the current incidents have remained geographically isolated, we have made the decision to begin returning these products to the sales floor today.”

The retailer based in Bentonville, Arkansas, sells firearms in about half of its 4,700 stores.

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