Gun sales protocol questioned, following Scheels incident

A day after a teenager shot himself inside the Scheels sporting goods store in Eden Prairie, questions are being raised over store policies regarding firearm sales.

According to Eden Prairie Police, a 19-year-old came into the store asking to see a semi-automatic handgun Monday evening. When the store employee handed over the firearm, the man took off running, loading the gun with ammunition he brought from home and firing a single shot.

FOX 9 reached out to Scheels to find out if store protocol was followed in Monday’s incident, and whether the incident would result in any policy changes. The company did not respond to our request for comment.

"We stress to our employees that they do not need to hand a firearm to anyone with whom they don’t feel comfortable with," said Randy Ferris of Stock and Barrel Gun Club in Eagan.

Stock and Barrel requires all employees to undergo extensive training to recognize warning signs in a potential purchase. Ferris says lack of eye contact, unusual behavior, and uncertainty are just some of the signs that would stop a purchase before it even starts.

"I want to use my intuition but I also now want to nourish my intuition by asking this individual some questions," he said. "Their answers are either making me more comfortable or less comfortable."

FOX 9 was unable to confirm if Scheels requires similar intuition training.

When the big box sporting goods store was being proposed, the Eden Prairie City Council expressed concern over gun sales in the mall. Former city council member - and now mayor - Ron Case was unsure if stricter protocols would have helped.

"What happened at Scheels last evening was sadly probably somewhat not preventable."