Man Assaulted and Shot with BB Gun Over Not Wearing a Facemask

OMAHA, NEBRASKA — A man was shot in the neck with a BB gun in an apparent confrontation over facemasks on Tuesday afternoon. According to Phil Anson, spokesman for the Omaha Police Department, the dispute took place around 2:40 p.m. in the vestibule of the Aldi supermarket at 885 S. 72nd Street.

As a man who was wearing a facemask was leaving the store, an unmasked man was entering. The man who was not wearing a mask ran up and spit at the man who was masked. They got into a scuffle, during which the unmasked man drew a BB pistol and shot the other man.

The victim complained of injuries to his face, neck, and shoulder, and said that he pulled a pellet out of his shoulder. The man, who asked not to be identified, said, “I asked him why he would do that, and he said, ‘You’re on the other team.” The man who did the shooting was arrested on suspicion of felony terroristic threats and misdemeanor assault, Anson said. Company officials with Aldi could not be reached for comment.

The pandemic had many odd and unprecedented effects on the general population, and those effects are sometimes even more pronounced on certain individuals. In this case, the man with the BB pistol could have just as easily have had a real pistol, and his actions could have had a much more tragic result.

Likewise, the man who was attacked could have been carrying a firearm and could have fatally shot the man who attacked him, claiming self-defense. In a split-second conflict, it’s extremely difficult to distinguish a BB gun from a real firearm.

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