Man with loaded rifle who unleashed ‘chaos’ at Missouri Walmart is charged, cops say

An armed man caused chaos inside a Springfield, Missouri, Walmart on Thursday afternoon until an off-duty firefighter detained him and he was arrested, police said.

Springfield police named the 20-year-old suspect in the case. Dmitriy N. Andreychenko was charged with second-degree felony making a terrorist threat, according to a Facebook post.

Greene County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson said Missouri protects the rights of people to open carry firearms, but only if done responsibly. Although no shots were fired, a Battlesfield police officer responding to the scene and resident were injured in a crash, prosecutors said.

“That right does not allow an individual to act in a reckless and criminal manner endangering other citizens,” Patterson said in the Facebook post.

Andreychenko was in jail on $10,000 bond with a condition for release being that he must not possess any guns, prosecutors said.

Police said they were dispatched to the superstore at 3150 West Republic Road just after 4 p.m. and took a man in his 20s into custody, according to a news release posted on Facebook on Thursday evening.

Lt. Mike Lucas of the Springfield Police Department said the man was sporting military-style clothes with body armor, toting a loaded “tactical rifle” and a second firearm as well as more than 100 rounds of ammo, the Springfield News-Leader reports.

“His intent obviously was to cause chaos here, and he did that,” Lucas said, per the News-Leader. “His intent was not to cause peace or comfort to anybody that was in the business here … In fact, he’s lucky he’s alive still, to be honest.”

Lucas said customers left the Walmart in a panic as the man — pushing a cart through the store — recorded a video on his phone and made comments to shoppers, according to the News-Leader.

A Walmart manager triggered the fire alarm to encourage people to flee, KY3 reports, and the armed man left at an emergency exit, where the firefighter detained him at gunpoint.

“At this time, the investigation is ongoing and we are working to determine his motives,” police said, asking that anyone present who hasn’t spoken to police contact the Springfield Police Department.

KY3 reported that police saw “many shoppers hiding outside the Walmart and at nearby businesses.”

The moment of panic came less than a week after a gunman shot and killed more than 20 at a Walmart store in El Paso, Texas, and just days after another mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio.

Related stories from San Luis Obispo Tribune

Jared Gilmour is a McClatchy national reporter based in San Francisco. He covers everything from health and science to politics and crime. He studied journalism at Northwestern University and grew up in North Dakota.