Cashier dead, 2 wounded during argument over Georgia store's mask policy: Sheriff

One of the wounded victims is an off-duty deputy.

A cashier is dead and two people were wounded after a shooting broke out following an argument inside a Georgia store over its COVID-19 mask policy, authorities said.

The incident took place Monday near Candler Road in DeKalb County at a Big Bear grocery store around 1:10 p.m. when Victor Lee Tucker Jr., 30, of Palmetto, Georgia, entered the store, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said.

The cashier was identified Tuesday as 41-year-old Laquitta Willis, according to the DeKalb County Police Department. Tucker, who was also wounded in the incident, is still in the hospital Tuesday and is expected to survive, police said.

He faces charges of murder and two counts of aggravated assault, according to authorities.

Tucker allegedly got into an argument with a cashier about wearing a face mask while he was checking out his items, according to investigators.

"Tucker left the store without making his purchase, but immediately returned inside. Tucker walked directly back to the cashier, pulled out a handgun and shot her," the GBI said in a statement.

An off-duty officer, who was a veteran of the sheriff’s office, pulled his weapon and opened fire on Tucker, the GBI said. Tucker was hit but returned fire and struck the off-duty officer twice, investigators said.

Another cashier was grazed by a bullet and she was treated at the scene, according to the GBI.

The cashier who was initially shot was pronounced dead at Grady Memorial Hospital, the GBI said.

The deputy was taken to Atlanta Medical Center and was in stable condition, according to investigators. Tucker, who was arrested by officers as he allegedly tried to crawl out of the store, was also taken to Grady and listed in stable condition, according to the GBI.

Indictments are pending for Tucker, the GBI said in a statement.