I tried to buy a gun at Walmart twice and roadblocks left me empty-handed both times
- Walmart is facing calls to stop selling guns in the wake of deadly shootings at its stores.
- I went to a Walmart store in Virginia with the intention of buying a gun as part of an investigation into the placement, selection, marketing, security, and sales of firearms in Walmart's stores.
- My journey to bring a gun home from Walmart was more complicated than I expected, and I was left with the impression that the company takes gun security and sales seriously.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
More than 128,000 people have signed a petition urging Walmart to stop selling guns and take a stronger stance against firearms since the shootings at stores in El Paso, Texas, and Southaven, Mississippi. But the company has said it has no plans to stop selling them.
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AdvertisementI went to Walmart with the intention of buying a gun last week as part of an investigation into the placement, selection, marketing, and security of firearms in Walmart's stores, and to learn more about the retailers' processes for governing gun sales.
My journey to bring a gun home from Walmart turned out to be far more complicated than I expected.
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I hit a road block before I even left the house.
After hours of Googling and phone calls, I finally had a breakthrough and found a Walmart store that sells guns.
When I arrived, I looked for the sporting goods department. I found it about 100 steps from the closest entrance to the store.
I spotted guns on display directly under the sign for the department.
I told an employee behind the counter that I wanted to buy a gun. They called for a manager.
While I waited, I browsed the supply of air guns near the firearm sales counter.
I also browsed the shelves of ammunition. Walmart said recently that it accounts for about 2% of all gun sales and 20% of ammunition sales in the US.
After a few minutes, a Walmart manager arrived at the gun sales counter. She said I could not buy a gun that day because no authorized firearm sellers were scheduled to work.
Before I left the store, the manager offered to remove a rifle from the case for me to inspect.
On Thursday, I drove another 30 minutes to Chesterfield, confident that I would successfully purchase a firearm that day.
I started filling out the necessary paperwork to buy a gun.
I left the store empty-handed — again.
Overall, the experience left me with the impression that the process of buying a gun at Walmart is more complicated than I expected, and that Walmart takes gun sales and security pretty seriously.
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