Arrest Made in Wal-Mart Intercom Case

Accused suspect is from Atlantic County, N.J., police say

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    NEWSLETTERS

    NBCPhiladelphia.com

    A man has been arrested for allegedly announcing a hateful message over a South Jersey Wal-Mart's intercom, police told NBC Philadelphia.

    The unidentified man, who is from Atlantic County, N.J., was taken into custody Friday evening, police said.

    Officials are staying tight-lipped on the arrest, but more details are expected to be released at a press conference Saturday.

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    Several shoppers have been boycotting the retailer since last Sunday when a man accessed the Washington Township, N.J. store's public address system and announced: "Attention Wal-Mart customers: All black people leave the store now."

    The store immediately admonished the remarks and issued an apology to shoppers in the store and then through the media several days later.

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    A former Wal-Mart employee says anyone can walk up and make a page from anywhere on the sales floor.

    In the wake of the incident, angry and offended customers lambasted the store for the ease at which someone could make a storewide page through several phones inside the store.

    Wal-Mart said Friday that an internal investigation uncovered new evidence suggesting that a shopper may have made the page.

    Washington Township Police and the Gloucester County Prosecutor's Office have been investigating the case as a possible hate crime.

    Authorities have previously said the person responsible could be charged with harassment and bias intimidation.