WILSON, N.C. — Security guards at two area malls were involved in violent altercations Tuesday while trying to thwart suspected shoplifters.
A security guard was cut while trying to stop a man from shoplifting in Wilson and an off-duty deputy working as a security guard shot out the car tire of a man fleeing in Fayetteville.
The incidents happened Tuesday evening at Belk's in Wilson and J.C. Penny's in Fayetteville.
In Wilson, police said that on Tuesday around 6 p.m. a man was seen taking items inside the Belk's store at Parkwood Mall.
A security guard met the man outside the building and tried to stop him. A fight ensued, and the man and security guards ended up back inside the store, police said.
The security guards were able to get one handcuff on the man during the struggle. During the fight, the man pulled a knife and cut the victim on the left upper arm and across the left hand, police said.
Police said the man threatened the other security guard with a knife and later fled the store with the handcuffs belonging to the security guards.
Jeffrey Reason of Elm City, who is also a reserve police officer for the town of Scotland Neck, was taken to the Wilson Medical Center where he received treatment.
Benjamin John Eason, 30, was arrested Wednesday morning in Raleigh and charged with assault with a deadly weapon, inflicting serious injury, assault with a deadly weapon and misdemeanor larceny.
In Fayetteville, security guards pursued a man suspected of shoplifting from J.C. Penny at Cross Creek Mall, Cumberland County Sheriff's officials said. An off-duty Cumberland County deputy, who was armed and was working as a mall security guard, became involved in the incident, deputies said.
At one point, the suspect got into a car and drove near an area where mall shoppers walk.
The off-duty officer, who happens to be a sharpshooter with the Cumberland County Sheriff's Department, fired his weapon at the suspect's car, hitting one of the tires, deputies said.
The suspect still managed to escape, although it is not clear how. No one was injured in the Fayetteville incident.