Ralph Charette, 71, said he bought a rifle and ammunition on Saturday to protect himself and his family as a wave of coronavirus panic sweeps across the country.
Charette, a military veteran, spent $1,500 at a gun shop in Germantown, Wisconsin, after encountering aggressive shoppers and empty shelves at local grocery stores.
Now, if looters come knocking, he’ll be ready, he said.
“There’s so much uncertainty and paranoia but you’ve got to protect your own,” Charette said.
Charette is among a growing tide of Americans who are going to retailers, pawnshops and online to purchase guns and ammunition in the wake of COVID-19, which had killed more than 60 people in the U.S. as of Saturday afternoon.