WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (TCD) --
A Florida man seen on security video pulling out a gun and waving it at another customer at a Royal Palm Beach Walmart on Saturday, July 11, has been arrested.
The Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office said Vincent Scavetta, 28, was arrested for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and improper exhibition of a firearm.
"Welcome to PBC Jail, son. Let this be a lesson. It could have ended badly," the sheriff's office said in a Facebook post.
The incident reportedly began when other shoppers confronted Scavetta for not wearing a mask inside the store. Store security video shows the suspect pushing an older man in a wheelchair through the store. The man in the wheelchair pulls a red neckerchief over his mouth in the store.
A shopper wearing a mask approached the suspect, and the unmasked man gives the shopper the middle finger before pulling a handgun from his waistband, the sheriff’s office said, and reportedly threatened to kill the other shopper.
Video shows the men were about 10 feet apart and yelling obscenities at each other, when Scavetta raised his middle finger at the other shopper, who advanced at Scavetta pointing his umbrella, investigators said. Another shopper interceded and Scavetta started to walk away. The first shopper said something more to Scavetta, who pulled a gun from his waistband and pointed it at the man, whose daughter grabbed him by the hand and tried to pull him away. Scavetta said the other man had threatened him and his father and hit him in the forehead with his umbrella’s tip, WFOR-TV reports.
Palm Beach County requires masks be worn in stores.
On July 15, Walmart announced it would require all shoppers and employees to cover their noses and mouths, and the change went into effect July 20, the Palm Beach Post reports.
Scavetta, who has a concealed weapons permit, told investigators he pulled his .40-caliber handgun because he feared for his life. He said he holstered his gun and he and his father left the store.
WFOR-TV reports detectives told Scavetta’s attorney that no charges would likely be filed if Scavetta gave up his permit, but Scavetta declined. Prosecutors then decided to pursue charges.
The incident was originally reported as occurring on Saturday, July 11. The sheriff's latest post says it occurred on the 12th.
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