- (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)
A woman has been killed at Costco, with police being forced to take action against her when she began to behave erratically and attacked officers with scissors and a knife.
The incident took place at a Costco in Loudoun County around 3 p.m. local time, and involved 38-year-old Mhai Scott, who was working at the store handing out pizza samples to customers.
However, other store employees started noticing that Scott was behaving strangely, and described her as getting very upset over the pizza samples she was handing out.
She suddenly started threatening fellow employees, waving around a knife and a pair of scissors.
Her colleagues describe that she became very agitated and started saying "crazy things." Some eye witnesses have described that she was shouting about the number of servings in a pizza box.
Store employees called 911 and two police officers quickly attended the scene at the reports of a disorderly person at the store. However, when they arrived the woman charged at the officers with a knife and the scissors. One of the officers quickly tried to take Scott down with a stun gun, but has since said "it did not work."
Scott ignored orders from the officers to put down her knife, and when the stun gun failed and she continued to come at the officers one of them fired a gunshot, fatally wounding her.
The Costco store was then quickly evacuated.
One shopper, Elizabeth Avelar, has reported, "I had no idea whether somebody was being shot, if there was a bomb threat. It was very difficult to get out of the parking lot — people were honking their horns. It was frightening."
One of the officers was injured in the incident, and it appears a ricocheting bullet may be to blame. However, his injuries were minor and he is expected to recover.
Officials at Costco have confirmed that Scott worked for Club Demonstration Services, a subcontractor that provides services to Costco.
Loudoun Sheriff Michael Chapman has said that investigations are continuing and surveillance footage is being looked at. He is confident that the officers responded in the correct manner. He said, "It's a tragic situation. I feel for everybody involved."