Scuffles are already breaking out between  shoppers desperate to get their hands on Black Friday deals as a record number  of stores open on Thanksgiving.

With 41 million people expected to shop on  what has been dubbed ‘Gray Thursday’, police have responded to fights and  threats between bargain-hungry customers, some of whom have camped outside  stores for days.

Outside a Kmart in Indianapolis, which opened  at 6am on Thursday, officers responded to  a brawl between shoppers as some  attempted to sell vouchers the store had handed out for limited  items.

‘Everybody started going crazy about it, and  then the cops got called in and it just became a madhouse,’ one  shopper told  News 8.

And at a Kmart on Stockton Boulevard in South  Sacremento, one shopper threatened to stab people while waiting in line for  K-Mart’s doors to open and told people he ‘wasn’t joking’.

Police arrived at the scene shortly after the  threat – made after shop staff came outside to hand out ‘doorbuster deal’  vouchers to the first in the line – to help control the crowds.

In a bid to minimize trouble, the Los Angeles  Police Department will deploy helicopters over some malls, while a cavalry of  police officers on bikes and horses will monitor from streets below.

According to the L.A.  Times, others will scour crowds from  rooftops and signs will warn shoppers against becoming victims of  theft.

It comes after a series of previous Black  Friday incidents; at a Wal-Mart in the city last year, scores of people were  injured when a woman pepper sprayed her competition in a bid for discounted  video games. Two years ago, gunfire broke out at a Toys R’ Us, killing two  people.

Source: The Daily Mail


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