Fort Bragg Soldier Arrested After Carrying AR-15 Into Mall For Photo Shoot

The dumbs. He took all the dumbs, and used them all at once.

A 25-year-old Army sergeant who was planning to take photos in military gear was arrested at Fayetteville’s Cross Creek Mall Thursday evening after dozens of panicked 911 calls from shoppers.

Bryan Scott Wolfinger is charged with going armed to the terror of the public. Police said Wolfinger was carrying an AR-15 assault rifle, military ballistic panel carrier and multiple high-capacity rifle magazine when he was taken into custody.

Investigators said multiple shoppers began calling 911 shortly after Wolfinger arrived at the mall for a photo shoot.


I get it.

Wolfinger is proud of the work he does serving this nation, and wanted to go to Flash Digital—a photography studio in the mall—to get a picture taken in something approximating his “battle rattle” so that he’d have something to look back on when he’s older.

Unfortunately, the young sergeant  didn’t seem to recall that Fayette-Nam was specifically called out as a target by ISIS, that there is presently a heightened state of alert due to terrorist threats leading up to the July 4 weekend, and that Cross Creek Mall is a “gun free zone.”

You can be assured that when the Fayetteville PD got dozens of calls reporting a man with a rifle in the mall kitted out in a plate carrier and fatigues they had every reason to fear the worst, so I commend them for taking Wolfinger into custody without incident.

The sergeant was released into the custody of his company commander, whom we can only assume had a few choice words to say to Wolfinger on the way back to base.

Going armed to the terror of the public is a relatively uncommon law and may not be familiar to many people. It is roughly akin to brandishing a weapon or menacing in other jurisdictions.


Update: Wolfinger wasn’t even in uniform, but was wearing a black tee shirt and jeans with a plate carrier over the top of it as he strode through the mall.

He is very lucky that he didn’t get shot.

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