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Arkansas Town, Grocer Grappling with Deadly Shooting

Suspect to be charged with 4 counts of murder following June 21 tragedy at Mad Butcher
Lynn Petrak, Progressive Grocer
Suspect Travis Eugene Posey is charged with four counts of murder in a shooting at a grocery store near Little Rock, Ark. (Photo from Ouachita County Sheriff's Office)

There has been another tragic shooting at a grocery store. Shoppers at the Mad Butcher in Fordyce, Ark., scrambled for safety after a man opened fire in the parking lot and later inside the supermarket, killing four people and wounding at least 14 others on June 21.

Arkansas State Police identified the suspect as Travis Eugene Posey. The 44-year-old man from nearby New Edinburg, Ark., faces four murder charges and is currently being held in custody.  

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According to news reports, customers heard gunshots around 11:30 a.m. and took cover or fled the scene. Two law enforcement officers were among those who were shot after they arrived and exchanged gunfire with Posey. The victims ranged in age from 23 to 81.

A motive has not been determined. “It was just a completely random, senseless act,” said Col. Mike Hagar, director of the Arkansas State Police at a news conference.  

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Mad Butcher is owned and operated by the employee-owned Houchens Food Group of Bowling Green, Ky., which shared a statement in the wake of the shooting. “We’re thankful for the rapid response from local authorities who apprehended the suspect and secured the area. Corporate and store officials are fully cooperating with law enforcement during the investigation. The store will remain closed until the investigation concludes. Please keep our employees, customers, and the Fordyce community in your thoughts and prayers,” the statement read.

This is the latest gun-related incident in a grocery store setting. In June, a person was injured in a shooting in the parking lot of a Tops Friendly Markets location in Waterloo, N.Y., a month after Tops dedicated a space honoring the victims of a 2022 mass shooting at a Buffalo location. In May, a man was charged with a shooting at a Kroger store in Fort Wayne, Ind., that did not result in any injuries or deaths but rattled the community.


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