Mystery spray causes evacuation, sickness at Walmart in west Harris County

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by KHOU.com staff

khou.com

Posted on August 19, 2013 at 5:42 AM

Updated Monday, Aug 19 at 5:47 PM

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas –- A Walmart west of Houston was evacuated late Sunday after two men sprayed a substance that made some people ill, deputies said.

It happened at the store near Highway 6 and Westpark Drive around 8:45 p.m., according to deputies with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

Dozens of employees and about 100 to 150 customers had to be evacuated. Some of them started to experience trouble breathing and suffered burning in their eyes and throat, deputies said.

“When I was in there, I was checking out, and I saw people choking,” said customer Ken Baptista. “I heard somebody was mixing chemicals in there and throwing it in the air.”

“By the time I went inside I just smelled something real funny,” said Farah Muhamoud. “We don’t know exactly what was it.”

At least four people were sent to area hospitals.

Deputies said the suspects got away, but surveillance cameras may have captured the pair on video.

Hazmat crews were called in and said the store was clear of the chemicals a short time later.

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