Man Loses It On Self Checkout Machine

By Lance Beaudry

Imagine axin' something like this up...

CLEVELAND – A disgruntled shopper figured out the hard way yesterday why stores usually limit the number of items allowed through self checkout.

Gabriel Haritty is in police custody today in Cadence, Ohio after having nearly destroyed one of the self checkout machines in the local Wal-Mart.

Store security guards detained Haritty after he used an axe he was trying to buy to punch all kinds of holes into the machine, making sure it would never work again.

It all started when Haritty decided to ignore the sign dictating the 12-item maximum for the self checkout cashes.

“There wasn’t no one in line and I just figured it would be quicker,” a subdued-sounding Harrity said in a phone interview from the county jail last night.

Turns out it wasn’t. The first few items scanned without fault. But then he hit the firewood. After an apparent struggle to get the wood out of his shopping cart, it wouldn’t scan. Helpless, Harrity looked everywhere for an employee. There weren’t any to be found. So he set the wood aside and moved on.

“I didn’t think it was no big deal. I was just gonna try the next thing and come back to the wood later,” Harrity said.

But, as fate would have it, the next thing was a bottle of dish soap that just happened to be on sale.

“I just had a funny feeling that something was gonna not be right,” a confused Harrity said.”

Indeed it wasn’t. The dish soap scanned at the full price and not the sale price. Harrity once again scoured the premises for an employee to help him, but to no avail.

“It was after the soap that I could feel myself getting a little testy,” Harrity said.

One look behind him revealed several disparaging stares. Harrity began to feel claustrophobic. It was then that he first kicked the machine and started cussing at it. He looked around again. This time everyone had their heads down.

“I don’t really know why I kicked it. Guess I was just feeling nervous or something,” Harrity said.

It didn’t take long for things to escalate. His kicks must have caused the machine to glitch because, like a broken record, it repeated over and over: “Please place the item in the bag.”

According to eyewitness accounts, that is when Harrity totally lost it.

“It’s already in the FUCKING bag,” Harrity yelled. Michael Yerb heard everything. He was there shopping for condoms when everything went down.

“I was just minding my own business when all of a sudden this freak starts screaming,” Yerb explained. “Naturally I ran over to see what was up, and he’s pounding his fists into the self checkout machine. It was actually pretty hilarious.”

According to Yerb, when the machine wouldn’t shut up, Harrity grabbed the axe from his shopping cart and went to town on the machine. It worked. The voice stopped. Harrity meanwhile could be heard yelling barely comprehensible obscenities from as far away as the parking lot of the neighboring Walgreens.

After killing the self checkout machine, Harrity dropped the axe and stared at it, as if contemplating what he had just done. At that moment he was motored by two security guards.

“I was licking my lips,” said Roy Jeremyson, one of the guards. “A chance like that doesn’t come by often and I obviously had to make the most of it. I got him good, really good.”

The police arrived about ten minutes later and brought Harrity into custody. He will remain there for questioning while Wal-Mart decides whether or not to sue him.

Harrity says he’s remorseful.

“Of course I regret doing it. I think I need to take a mental checkup and figure out why I could’ve done something like this.”

Who knows what that means…