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Mississippi high court rules Wal-Mart not responsible for selling ammo to minor

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Jackson, Miss. — The Mississippi Supreme Court has ruled 5-4 that Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is not liable for selling bullets to an underage customer who then used the ammunition to commit murder.

The lawsuit was filed by the relatives of Robert Williams, who was shot and killed by his girlfriend’s son in 2006. The son, Xavier Zurndell Moore, was 20 years old at the time, and shot Williams with ammunition purchased at a local Walmart store. Federal law requires that a person be 21 to buy pistol ammunition.

Moore pleaded guilty to manslaughter.

To reach their decision, a majority of the Mississippi Supreme Court found that there was little evidence to prove that Wal-Mart knew Moore was under age."Further, nothing in the record suggests that, at the time of purchase, Wal-Mart had any reason to believe that Moore would commit a criminal act," the court ruled.

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In-Store Experience Goes ‘Virtual’ at Rookie USA

BY CSA STAFF

A new, kids-only sports store in Manhattan, Rookie USA, is utilizing the latest in innovative HD projection and audio-visual technology to engage and inform shoppers.

The technology, the Tensator Virtual Assistant, projects an image of New York Knicks’ player Carmelo Anthony that, at nearly 7 ft., captivates shoppers with its 3D look and feel. The image provides store and branding information, and even shares basketball tips. It also incorporates surround-sound audio and video.

The virtual Carmelo Anthony also explains how to use the store’s various interactive features. It directs kids to the Hero’s corner, where they can compare their footprints to those of their favorite athlete. It also invites them to experience the iPad bar, shoot hoops at a virtual basketball court, and use the interactive touch screens and kiosks located throughout the store. It also has a feature that allows customers to scan QR codes, using their smartphones to gain exclusive information and deals on Rookie USA brands.

“Rookie USA has gone the extra mile in creating a one of a kind shopping experience by leveraging the global appeal of a world-renowned superstar like Carmelo Anthony and combining it with our next generation digital signage solution, the Tensator Virtual Assistant,” said Bill Vetter, senior VP and general manager, Tensator. “Because the Tensator Virtual Assistant is completely customizable there is no limit to the kind of marketing, or in-store experience that can be created to increase traffic, boost sales, inform customers about promotions, and generate excitement, all while building brand awareness.”


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Kmart joins trend of cutting layaway fees

BY CSA STAFF

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. — The trend of doing away with layaway fees continues, this time with Kmart announcing that it has removed its layaway service fee both in stores and online through Nov. 17.

The retailer follows suit with Toys"R"Us, which said it would drop the $5 upfront service fee and eliminate the minimum purchase requirement for all orders created in stores through Oct. 31 and Walmart, which, while not cutting back its layaway fee, has rolled it back to $5 from $15.

Kmart, which offers the program year round, said the decision to make the program free "emphasizes the company’s commitment to delivering value and convenience to customers, acknowledging family budgets are strained during the holiday."

"At Kmart, we understand the excitement holidays bring, and the budget concerns that come with them," Sears Holdings VP financial services Jai Holtz said. "By providing free layaway we want to help make holiday shopping less stressful."

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