EDGEWOOD, N.M. (KRQE) — The Edgewood Walmart is closed until further notice after three separate fires were set in the store Sunday evening. Fire crews from multiple agencies responded to the Edgewood Walmart around 8:30 p.m. and found flames shooting from the building.
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“I started to yell ‘fire… fire’ and nobody came to me, nobody said nothing. Everybody was still doing their business shopping,” said a customer, Abelino Lopez.
Once they realized there was a fire, witnesses say employees started scrambling to get everyone out as smoke filled the store. Santa Fe County Fire officials say at least three fires were found inside and are calling it arson. Witnesses say one fire was near the restrooms while another was in the aisle with paper products.
“It was in the aisle where they have all the tissues and paper towels, paper plates, and everything like that. It seems to me that somebody deliberately had set the fire. They knew what they were doing,” said Lopez.
Everyone was able to make it out but it took firefighters nearly three hours to get the fires out. People getting ready for the holidays say they will have to shop elsewhere for now.
“I came to Walmart and saw the parking lot was empty and noticed that something was going on and found out that there was a big fire. It’s a super big inconvenience because I came here to do Thanksgiving shopping but now I have to go to Albuquerque with me and my car full of kids, said another customer, Christina Lheureux.
The state fire marshal has now taken over the investigation. No arrests have been made but they are working with the Edgewood Police Department to identify people of interest.
Walmart officials say it’s too soon to say how long the store will remain closed. If you have any information regarding this incident, call Crime Stoppers at 505-955-5050 or the Edgewood Police Department at 505-428-3710.