WalMart Needle Crimes Could Be Copycats

Cartersville, Ga (WAOK/AJC)-Police say a 15th syringe has been found in another piece of clothing purchased at the WalMart in Bartow County. Now authorities are looking at whether some of the reported needles may be the result of copycat crimes.

According to the AJC, not all of the syringes have been the same type, but deputies continue to investigate and take each case seriously, Russell Ballard with the Bartow sheriff’s office said.

A total of 15 syringes have been found in clothing purportedly connected to the Cartersville store since late November — at the store itself, or in clothes bought there. So far, there have been no arrests.

Syringes have been found in various clothing items purchased at the store, including children’s pajamas and a pair of pants, police have said. Investigators have said they are working with store officials to review hours of surveillance video footage.

“We continue to assist law enforcement with their investigation,” Walmart said in statement Tuesday. “Those efforts include bringing in additional associates to review video and monitor the sales floor, as well as physically inspect apparel items on a daily basis. We hope that whoever is responsible for these senseless acts will be found very soon and held accountable for their actions.”‬

In one of the first instances reported, Patricia Headrick’s finger was pricked when she reached into a boxed bra on a shelf on Black Friday. Headrick has said she must wait several months to have her blood re-tested to determine if she contracted an illness from the needle.

Syringes were sent to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Crime Lab, but no fingerprints were found. Not all of the syringes found have been sent to the GBI, according to John Bankhead, GBI spokesman.

Anyone falsely reporting a syringe has been found could possibly face charges, police said.

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