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Melee Breaks Out In Wilmington Drug Store

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(Credit: Photo provided by Wilmington Police Dept)

(Credit: Photo provided by Wilmington Police Dept)

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By Chelsea Karnash

WILMINGTON, Del. (CBS) – Customers scattered at a Wilmington drug store on Friday afternoon after punches began flying in the check-out line.

Shortly before 1 p.m. on Friday, a verbal argument broke out between two customers, a male and a female, at the Walgreen’s at 839 North Market Street. The two began yelling at each other over who was first in line, and tensions escalated when the male customer, 28-year-old Gary Crawley Jr. of Wilmington, slapped the female in the face.

The incident became more heated as Crawley tried to hit the female again, and a 44-year-old uniformed store security guard stepped in. The security guard and the suspect then became locked in a physical altercation, causing patrons to flee.

walgreens21 Melee Breaks Out In Wilmington Drug Store

(Credit: Wilmington Police)

Eventually, the security guard was able to remove the Crawley from the store, but the latter then ran back in through another entrance, where he began screaming, waving his arms and menacing the store manager before attempting to attack her. As Crawley went behind the counter, he was tackled by a security officer and another male employee.

The fight continued behind the counter, when a 14-year veteran of the Wilmington Police Department, Sgt. Thomas Ragonese, heard the radio call on his way home from a case and responded to the scene at the Walgreen’s. Sgt. Ragonese was able to place the suspect under arrest without further incident.

Both Crawley and the security guard suffered minor injuries, but the security guard refused treatment.

Crawley was treated at Wilmington Hospital and then transported to police headquarters. He is awaiting arraignment on charges including Offensive Touching, Assault 3rd, Menacing, Disorderly Conduct and Criminal Trespass 2nd.

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