Gun shop owner sleeps in store to ward off thieves during Moore County blackouts

MOORE COUNTY, N.C. — It’s been three days since gunfire took down part of the power grid in a North Carolina community, forcing tens of thousands of people to get by in the dark.

While a federal investigation has begun into the shootings at two Moore County substations, more than 35,000 people are still without power. Duke Energy is aiming for power to be restored by Thursday, spokesperson Jeff Brooks said Monday.

Among those coping with the situation are local business owners. Action 9′s Jason Stoogenke found one in particular is going to extremes to protect the store and the public.


Ed’s Gun Shop has a generator and it’s humming along. Owner Ed Nicely keeps it mainly for hurricanes and winter storms, but any time there’s a power outage, he worries about looting.

“I built this building with responsibility in mind,” he said.

He doesn’t want any of the weapons stolen or, more importantly, out on the streets, adding to the crisis.

“We’ve never had a break in, knock on wood, and just don’t want to have a break in,” he said.

But he and his team have been going one step further, sleeping there the last few nights to keep an eye on things.

“Spent the night, spent the night, spent the night again and spending the night tonight until power comes back on and things get back to some kind of normal around here, we’re just going to stay here,” he told Stoogenke.

He doesn’t want to say where their beds are and give away too many secrets.

As for the business side of things, he said sales are down about 60% because people don’t know the store’s open.

(WATCH BELOW: NC families seek shelter from cold amid power outages caused by substation attack)

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