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Police: Walmart evacuated after worker's ex texted her a photo of gun pointed at store

Police arrested Samuel Ayres, 19, on charges of Menacing, Unlawful Use of a Weapon, Disorderly Conduct, Coercion and Criminal Mischief. (Lebanon Police)

LEBANON, Ore. - Police evacuated Walmart after an on-duty employee called police Wednesday to report she had broken up with her boyfriend - and that he texted her a photo of his hand pointing a gun at the store along with a threat to kill her, Lebanon Police said.

As officers arrived on scene, the boyfriend messaged her again to say he could see the poice cars.

That left police with a difficult situation: It was unknown if the man was in the parking lot - or had already entered the store.

Police evacuated the Walmart and took the target of the threats to a safe location.

Additional units arrived from the Linn County Sheriff's Office, Oregon State Police and Albany Police to help search the building. K-9 officers attending a training in a nearby city responded and joined the search.

During the search, police learned the suspect - identifyied as 19-year-old Samuel F. Ayres - had fled the seen. "Police continued the search, made sure the area was safe, and allowed the workers to return to Walmart," police said in a report.

Police went to the home of the suspect in Albany on Thursday. As officers arrived, the suspect climbed into the passenger seat of a car, police said.

The car drove off, headed to Lebanon.

Police there located the vehicle and "executed a high-risk traffic stop due to the nature of threats Samuel had made the night prior, as well as the possibility that he may have been armed," according to a report.

Officers took Ayres into custody without further incident, police said.

He was booked into jail on charges of Menacing, Unlawful Use of a Weapon, Disorderly Conduct, Coercion and Criminal Mischief.

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