South Carolina shoplifter stole guns from Walmart

(AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

Walmart sells guns, at least in theory. I’ve never seen anyone around the firearms counter when I’ve been in any of their stores, so I have no idea how they sell them, but they apparently do.

They also appear to keep the firearms secured so that curious hands can’t handle the guns without an employee handy.

Apparently, that’s far from universal.

A man who stole items ranging from guns to toys at an area Walmart was arrested on multiple charges, the Columbia Police Department said.

Christopher Ulysees Cunningham was booked at the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center Monday, jail records show. The 32-year-old Richland County resident was charged with 14 counts of shoplifting, first-degree assault and battery, and second-degree burglary, police said in a news release.

Cunningham is facing another shoplifting and a petit larceny charge from the city, and is also being held on more shoplifting and petit larceny charges issued by Richland County, jail records show.

The charges stem from a seven-month stretch, when Cunningham stole items from the Walmart Shopping Center at 7520 Garners Ferry Road, according to the release. That’s near the junction with Interstate 77.

Two of the weapons have been recovered, according to the release. But there is no word on the other two guns or the identity of the second man in the heist.

The assault charge apparently stems from a confrontation with an employee after he was caught trying to steal stuff.

However, I’m just trying to figure out just how he managed to shoplift not just one guy, but four. It’s…I’m just kind of baffled about this right now.

And yet, guns were shoplifted.

Don’t get me wrong, I can imagine how it could happen in a busy but understaffed gun store. I can imagine how all the other products got shoplifted from the Walmart in question.

But guns from a Walmart?

I almost have to think there was someone on staff who could help facilitate it because as I said earlier, I’ve never even seen an employee in the firearm section of the store, and that’s in Walmarts in multiple cities. I don’t see how he got access to guns so he could steal them without help.

“He picked the lock!” someone might bark, but if he’s that good of a criminal, why hit a Walmart knowing they video damn near everything except the bathrooms?

Believe me, this isn’t some master thief we’re talking about here.

Then again, if there’s a saving grace in gun thefts, it’s that it’s rarely a master thief pulling these jobs. Guns don’t make that much on the black market and the master thieves are rarely going to get involved in any score that doesn’t involve dollar amounts with a couple of commas in them. Guns could, in theory, pull that kind of money, but only if you hit a military base and steal some kind of prototype.

No, these were low-level crooks who tried to make a quick buck.

Yet again, that still raises a lot of questions for me. I’m just curious if we’ll ever get answers.