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Margate WalMart Shooting: Shoplifter Kills Security Associate Lewis Jhon, Then Himself (PHOTOS)

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CBS Miami
CBS Miami

A suspected shoplifter opened fire at a South Florida WalMart Friday evening, killing a loss prevention officer before apparently turning the gun on himself a short time later.

Margate Police say Terrell Kennith Johnson, 22, whom 49-year-old Lewis Jhon had caught stealing undershirts, fatally shot Jhon just inside the grocery entrance at the WalMart supercenter on West Altantic Boulevard before fleeing the scene on foot.

A massive manhunt ensued before officers responding to second reports of gunfire found Johnson dead several blocks away, apparently from a self-inflicted gunshot wound the head.

MPD Spokesman Lt. Andy Zettek said a woman was also taken into custody after a search, but details remain scarce. Surveillance video shows Jhon in a striped shirt, talking to Johnson just moments before the younger man pulled a gun.

"The police department worked with him for a number of years, and it’s a very sad day tonight," Zettek said. "Employees here are very saddened. They are grieving the lost of this gentlemen."

The shooting, which occurred about 7:15 p.m., sent witnesses to Twitter to describe panic in the store and a neighborhood swarming with police:

was just in a Walmart in Margate Florida shots ring out and I had to run with my kids and leave the emergency exit do not go to the Margate

its crazy over by walmart on 441 omg u got cops every were helicopters in the sky ambulances i was os scared its crazy out in margate.

The store remained closed Friday evening, roped off by yellow crime scene tape.

The incident marks the second time this month stealing goods from a South Florida WalMart has turned fatal: police shot and killed a suspected thief during a confrontation September 6 after the man reportedly robbed a WalMart store in Hallandale Beach.

It also comes just a month after four people were shot in the parking lot of a WalMart in Texas, and less than 6 months after a WalMart employee in Phoenix was murdered during a robbery attempt.

This story was updated to include the suspect's name.

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