RICHLAND COUNTY, FL – A U.S. military veteran subdued a crazed, knife-wielding man threatening to slash and stab employees and customers at a South Carolina Walmart on Wednesday, with the entire incident captured on bystander video.
In the video, an apparently unhinged man wearing a red jacket is seen waving around a knife at the Columbia shopping center while yelling that he was going to cut people, according to the Richland County Sheriff’s Department.
One of the shoppers watching the chaotic scene unfold was military vet Demario Davis, who said that he took his time and waited for an opportunity for him to intervene on behalf of his fellow customers to present itself.
“I was at the checkout when my son noticed the guy walk in with the knife open,” he said. “He then proceeded to the service desk waving the knife at a few female employees. He yelled ‘when the cops get here, I’m going to start cutting you all up.’”
After watching another customer unsuccessfully attempt to disarm the man – and nearly getting cut in the face as a result – Davis said that he had seen enough. In the video, he can be seen picking up a stanchion post and – wielding it like a giant club – sneaking up behind the culprit and smacking him over the head with it, knocking him to the ground.
“That’s when my military training kicked in and I casually walked over to the object not only to take him down but also protect myself in case I failed,” he said. “But with my great military training, I was able to neutralize the threat until law enforcement arrived.”
After the man hit the ground, another customer can be seen grabbing his dropped knife while other shoppers piled on the suspect and immobilized him until authorities arrived.
The suspect was arrested and taken to a hospital for evaluation, according to the sheriff’s office.