Anchorage, Alaska - Police say Daniel Pirtle, a double amputee with metal, prosthetic legs, went into a Walmart and shot a manager after getting into an argument over Pirtle’s unrestrained dog.
Police say that on Saturday afternoon, 45-year-old Daniel Pirtle went inside a crowded Walmart in a motorized cart, accompanied by his unrestrained service dog. Pirtle got into an argument with the store’s assistant manager, 33-year-old Jason Mahi, after Mahi asked Pirtle to restrain his dog.
The argument escalated to the point that Pirtle pulled out a gun and shot Mahi in the stomach. Afterwards, Pirtle navigated the motorized cart through the aisles, making his way towards the store’s entrance. He was apprehended by police near the front of the store where officers took a handgun from him, as well as his legs, before placing him in a police car.
Witnesses said Mahi was conscious after being shot. “He said, ‘I can’t feel my feet.’ He just kept talking about his kids,” said a patron who rushed to Mahi’s aid. “‘My kids, my son,’ that’s basically all he said. Everyone else tried to keep him awake.”
Mahi was rushed to the hospital and underwent surgery. On Monday, he was listed in critical but stable condition at Providence Hospital. Daniel Pirtle was taken to the Anchorage jail and has been charged with first-degree assault and fourth-degree weapons misconduct. He’s being held on $50,000 cash-only bail.
Susi Griffith, a longtime friend of Pirtle’s said he went everywhere with his 5-month-old dog, Wookie, and his guns. She said he’d shown signs of instability, but seemed to be adjusting after his legs were removed because of his diabeetus.