Palm Beach, FL — A well-planned act of domestic terrorism ended before it even began Monday evening when two tanned white men, angry about immigration and same-sex marriage, locked eyes in a Palm Beach Walmart just miles from President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club.
Both men wore MilSpec tactical vests and eye protection, but the matching Punisher bandanas hiding their identities were a dead giveaway. The alleged shooters pointed their AR-15 rifles in a safe direction as an argument ensued over just who got to the store’s electronics section first.
The potentially deadly conflict along the back wall of the sales floor went mostly unnoticed until an associate watched 23-year-old Kyle Fielder punch a hole in the drywall.
“He just kept shoutin’ about ‘find another Walmart’ and beatin’ up the merchandise until that older feller cold-cocked him,” three-time Associate of the Month Nancy Harrel told WPBF anchor Todd McDermott just hours after the arrest. “And then they ended up at the registers pointing their rifles at each other.”
Police: Initially a Verbal Dispute
Arriving officers quickly secured the black rifles and separating the men to investigate. They might have been mistaken for open carry advocates had not the second suspect, later identified as 47-year-old Haywood Craddock of Gainesville, started shouting about “shooting the jews and illegals.”
As YouTube footage leaked on Facebook and Instagram in hours after their arrest, the #fakenews media was notably undecided. Florida man to # cancels for the incident until President Trump took sides with the older one.
@realdonaldtrump tweeted early Tuesday morning, just minutes after the gunman’s mugshot hit Fox News. Meanwhile, Fielder and Craddock have been awarded an honorary “Good Guy With A Gun” trophies in absentia by Wayne LaPierre, the National Rifle Association CEO.
Palm Beach Police Chief Nick Caristo issued a statement saying Fielder and Craddock have admitted to detectives intended to carry out a mass shooting. They were booked into the Palm Beach County Main Detention Center on suspicion of disorderly conduct and improper exhibition of a dangerous weapon.
Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw did not immediately respond to requests for more information Tuesday. Still, Wednesday morning, he confirmed through a spokesman that Fielder filed a petition to bunk with Craddock, which was denied at Craddock’s insistence.