Because of Walmart’s size and geographic reach — it has more than 4,000 stores spread across the United States — the retailer is often the site of crimes, some of them violent. Retailers and their employees reported that violence increased in all kinds stores during the coronavirus pandemic.

Walmart It has stated that it has taken steps to You can increase security at some stores by installing cameras in parking lots, and hiring off-duty officers for busy shopping days.

The debate about gun violence has often been centered on the store. Although the store sells guns Walmart The restrictions have become more severe firearm sales In the wake of mass shootings. It stopped selling handguns or certain rifles, such as AR-15s, in recent years. to Buy firearms to 21.

Chesapeake is home to the Walmart It was a place of refuge for many. On Wednesday, some people who were interviewed said that they visited only days prior to Thanksgiving. Others stated that they planned. to Visit either on the night of shooting or later in week.

Two victims were still in critical condition by Wednesday evening, according to hospital officials. Sarah Walker, one of them, was also injured. Walmart Mother of three and employee, who was also a mother of three. She sustained five gunshot wounds. to Jennie Walp, a friend of Ms. Walker’s.

“She was always a force to be reckoned with, determined to work hard to provide for her kids, and always good for a laugh,” Ms. Walp spoke out. “It’s definitely shocking to have it hit so close to home, with the ongoing violence that continues to happen all over our country.”

Michael Corkery and Maggie Astor contributed reporting. Jesus Jimenez was Christine Chung, Christine Chung, Jenna Russell, Rich Griset were also involved. Kitty Bennett contributed research.