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Army-Navy stores saw items flying off shelves in days before US Capitol riot

Army-Navy Outdoors, 1649 North Military{ } in West Palm Beach. (WPEC)

The owner of Army-Navy Outdoors in West Palm Beach and North Lauderdale says they had a surge in sales of some tactical gear for several days before the riot in Washington on Jan. 6.

Some of the buyers said they were going to Washington.

People came in buying pepper spray, bulletproof vests, nightsticks, stun guns, knives and other items before heading to Washington.

Owner Sam Zackowitz says the only time he’s seen sales skyrocket like that is before a hurricane when people rush in to buy food, stoves, propane, lanterns and batteries.

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After New Year’s, sales are usually very flat for the first week or so. That was not the case this year; he says from Jan. 2 through Jan. 5, his two stores sold about $20,000 worth of tactical gear. Zackowitz says he was not in the store during those days when sales soared.

With Inauguration Day next week, he says the sales have now returned to normal.

Zackowitz feels there won’t be another riot on Inauguration Day when Joe Biden is sworn in as the next President of the United States. He’s not surprised the sales of the pepper spray, bulletproof vests and stun guns have retuned to normal.

“I’m not surprised at all because there are thousands of people that didn’t realize that there’s no city with more video than Washington D.C. and I think by the time they get done, thousands of people are gonna get arrested and they didn’t realize they’re gonna get arrested," he said. "They didn’t realize what they were doing, they didn’t realize it was sedition. They didn’t realize they could go to jail for 20 years. I think a lot of people learned their lesson."