A man tried to steal merchandise from a Macy’s store in Center City when he stabbed a security guard and injured another, according to Philadelphia police.
The raid began around 10:45 a.m. Monday at the Macy’s at 13th and Market streets. Police said an unidentified man tried to steal hats from the store and was caught by security guards who took the items back.
The suspect left the store and returned 15 minutes later, stabbing one of the guards, a man in his 30s, in the neck. A second security guard, a 23-year-old man, tried to intervene and was stabbed in the face and arms, according to investigators.
The 30-year-old guard was taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead at 11:19 a.m. The 23-year-old guard is in stable condition.
According to interim Philadelphia Police Commissioner John Stanford, the guards were hired by Macy’s and were unarmed.
“A sad situation. Right here, weeks before the holidays, these security officers do their job,” Stanford said. “They’re here to make sure people can come to this place and shop in a safe manner. “When something like this happens on a Monday morning, again, during the holiday season or any time of the year, it’s another sign that every crime in the city is important.”
The stabbing suspect fled the scene and boarded a Market-Frankford Line train at the 13th Street station, throwing the knife onto the tracks, police said. The suspect was later arrested at the Somerset station on Kensington Avenue in the city’s Kensington neighborhood, investigators said.
The incident caused delays on SEPTA trains between the 15th and 8th Street stations, officials said.
According to Stanford, Center City Macy’s has the most retail theft in Philadelphia.
“To date, they’ve had over 250 retail theft complaints at this location, so it’s an ongoing situation,” Stanford said. “Continuous problem. Not just for big chain stores like this, but in terms of businesses across the city.”
The Macy’s store is a popular destination in Philadelphia during the holiday season and features a light display with approximately 100,000 LED lights and a giant Christmas tree.
“It’s a big attraction,” Stanford said. “You hear the music playing in the background. It’s sad that our city is going through this. But again, encourage people to come to our city. And encourage people to come and enjoy the city as much as they can.”
Macy’s is currently closed due to the stabbing. A store spokesperson sent a statement to NBC10.
“We are heartbroken about today’s incident at Macy’s Center City,” the spokesperson wrote. “The store will be temporarily closed as we work with law enforcement on this investigation and have no further comment on this case. Ensuring the safety and well-being of our customers and colleagues is always our top priority.”