SEMMES, Ala. (AP) — A hammer-wielding man who was shot and killed by a deputy outside a Walmart store in Alabama has been identified.
Bernie Wade Johnson, 34, was confronted by the deputy Thursday after store workers called reported a theft. Johnson threatened the deputy with a claw hammer, according to multiple witnesses and Mobile County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Paul Burch.
Witnesses said Johnson told the deputy, “You’re either going to have to kill me or I’m going to kill you,” according to Burch. The deputy fired once, killing Johnson.
The deputy, who wasn’t immediately identified, has been placed on administration leave.