Walmart evacuated, but police find no evidence of gunfire

Wednesday, July 26, 2017 - 14:48
  • A sign outside a Walmart store at the corner of Eagle River Road and E. Eagle River Loop Road on July 21, 2017. (Star photo by Kirsten Swann)

A loud bang inside the Eagle River Walmart triggered reports of gunfire, a store evacuation and a large police presence Friday night.

Following an “extensive” search, an Anchorage Police Department dispatch supervisor said no evidence of a gunshot was ever found.

Officers initially responded to a report of a gunshot inside the store at the corner of E. Eagle River Loop Road and Eagle River Road around 9:30 p.m. July 21, according to APD. More than an hour later, they’d found nothing — no damage, no stray bullet and apparently no crime involving a firearm. Multiple people from inside and outside the store were questioned, police said, but nobody was arrested and there were no outstanding suspects Friday night. By 11:17 p.m., one of the last officers on the scene was rolling out of the nearly empty Walmart parking lot. Police had no immediate explanation as to the nature of the sound that caused the call.

A manager at the store declined to comment. The shopping center — which remained closed following the evacuation Friday night — was scheduled to reopen as usual at 6 a.m. Saturday morning.

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