The Associated Press
AUSTIN, Texas -- A former Wal-Mart employee was arrested in the crowded store where he once worked, armed with a 9 mm handgun and an "unreasonable amount of ammunition" that police believe he intended to use, according to arrest affidavits.
The wife of Edward William Eberle, 51, called police around 3 p.m. Thursday after finding a note he left telling her: "I have chosen a life in prison. ... I'll try to die soon. Please return my library book and walk Cassie," the Austin American-Statesman reported in its online edition Monday.
Eberle also sent a text messages to his sister telling her he loved her but didn't want any visitors or letters, and urging her to turn her television on, according to the affidavits. In a note, he also gave his wife permission to "sell any story you wanna tell."
About two hours after his wife called authorities, police found Eberle in the Wal-Mart, which the affidavit said was teeming with customers and employees.
Police said he had a gun near his chest and an "unreasonable amount of ammunition, leading one to believe that he had the intentions of using the handgun and ammunition he had in his possession."
Eberle was charged with making a terroristic threat and unlawfully carrying a weapon in a place that is licensed to sell alcohol. The felony charges carry up to 10 years in prison each.
Police said they did not know if Eberle had an attorney. They told The Associated Press he had an Austin address, but there was no phone number listed under Eberle's name in several area directories.
Eberle had worked at the Wal-Mart from September until March, according to police affidavits.
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"We deeply appreciate the quick actions of the Austin police to bring the situation under control, ensuring the safety and security of our customers and associates," Wal-Mart spokesman Dan Fogleman said in an e-mail to The Associated Press.