SOUTHAVEN, Miss. (localmemphis.com) – “I do believe we have our man,” Desoto County District Attorney John Champion said.
Champion is talking about fired employee Martez Abram, charged with killing two former coworkers Tuesday morning at this store.
“We will begin the extradition process back to Desoto County,” Champion said.
The chaos and confusion was undeniable.
“Pretty scary situation, total panic,” Witness Phil Cox said.
Southaven, Mississippi, became the latest community to deal with the aftermath of a deadly, active shooter situation at the Walmart Supercenter on Southcrest Parkway.
“No city in America is immune to this. It’s sad, but it just shows how important the training is,” Southaven Mayor Darren Musselwhite said.
Mayor Musselwhite described Abram as a disgruntled employee.
Family tells Local 24 News the shooting killed two Walmart managers, Anthony Brown and Brandon Gales. It devastated dozens of their coworkers, some who needed medical attention.
“I have a lot of emotions, but my emotions are basically towards the employees who witnessed it, you know, and knew these people and worked with them every day,” Cox said.
Cox said he was in the parking lot when the gunfire began.
“My wife said, is that a gunshot? I said, that’s either a gunshot or someone has run over a Coke bottle,” Cox said.
Southaven Police Chief Macon Moore said officers found Abram on the west side of the building and he fired, hitting and injuring one of the officers. The officers returned fire, injuring Abram. Southaven leaders said a bulletproof vest likely saved that officer’s life.
“Our police they really showed their guts today,” Mayor Musselwhite said. “If it hadn’t been for their efforts, it would have been more lives lost.”
Local 24 News also learned authorities searched Abram’s home and recovered at least two weapons and his car for evidence.
Authorities also said Abram set a fire in the baby section of the Walmart, but a suspicious package checked out by the Shelby County Bomb Squad turned out to be a false alarm.