Rialto makes national headlines over Blck Friday fights & injuries

I don’t know about the rest of you but I had no desire to spend my thanksgiving energies on black Friday brick and mortar sales. Unless you are one of the more than 5 thousand that converged on the Rialto Wal-mart black Friday sale. This blog has time and time again warned the community and our local government on relying on Wal-mart to provide quality service and an appropriate level of security. Rialto has never been a retail hub so our city is less than experienced with the issues that mass retail brings.

Rialto police vehicles sit outside the Rialto Walmart Thursday night after fights occurred at the store. Police said there were three fights shortly after 7 p.m. at the store at 1610 S. Riverside Ave., two of which were inside over merchandise and the third outside that caused injury to an officer. Will Lester – Staff Photographer

Rialto police vehicles sit outside the Rialto Walmart Thursday night after fights occurred at the store. Police said there were three fights shortly after 7 p.m. at the store at 1610 S. Riverside Ave., two of which were inside over merchandise and the third outside that caused injury to an officer. Will Lester – Staff Photographer

So when 5 thousand plus people were lined up and waiting for the Black Friday deals on Thanksgiving night Wal-mart officials made a major cardinal sin by deviating from their original goal of opening at 8pm. People in line said that was when the tension began. Lori Woods of Fontana said “When the line started moving earlier than expected people started pushing and cutting, no one was watching or keeping the peace until police arrived”.

The San Bernardino Sun reported another woman made a similar statement. “We were fine waiting and didn’t feel scared until the fight broke out,” said Marta Vargas of Rialto. “The police jumped in quickly and took care of the problem.” This man reported the fights “We saw a man and a woman fighting inside over a flat screen TV,” said Jamal Jones, 56, of Rialto. “This is my first Black Friday and my last. The crowds are pushy and people are downright rude.”

Wal-mart officials would like for you to believe that they care and have things under control with this statement they released to the media. “The fight at the Rialto store was an unfortunate and isolated incident to an otherwise very safe event,” corporate spokeswoman Betsy Harden said. “Providing our customers with the best and safest shopping experience is always our top priority.”

Sadly though You Tube and National media tells a different story of Wal-mart store all over the country failing to offer appropriate levels of security and protection. Many mall and mass shopping centers that do offer appropriate levels of security and safety rarely have incidents and they don’t raise to the level of multiple brawls. Even Lisa Ann Walter on KFI AM 640 has a weekly segment on the epic fails that follow the popular discount retailer Wal-mart.

So one Wal-mart incident took a dozen police officers (overtime) two agencies helicopter coverage ($$$$$) a police officer with a broken wrist (off work with pay and reduced what this officer can do with his family).

So join me in thanking Wal-mart for once again failing to offer any real level of security or safety. Also don’t forget your city is going to allow the same people the right to open an even bigger Super Wal-mart as well as add a Target Store in the near future.

On a even less the fortunate note it seems the most dangerous city in the Inland Empire can call the Highland Wal-mart a San Bernardino victory as stated here in the SB Sun article:

Not every city had issues though, San Bernardino police said they haven’t experienced any problems with Walmart stores on Black Friday the past four years.

“Our partnership and coordination with Wal-mart has truly prevented a lot of the problems that you’ve seen elsewhere,” said San Bernardino police Sgt. Travis Walker.

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