Some shoppers at the largest mall in the US are being forced to empty their pockets before they can empty their wallets — as officials test out a new “weapons detection system.”
The Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn. is rolling out the airport-style security after gunfire rang out at its Nike store in August, reps confirmed to The Post Wednesday.
Shoppers who used the mall’s north entrance also had to undergo bag checks similar to those conducted at concerts and sporting events.
Mall officials said the metal detector pilot program could expand to another entrance of the shopping center, which features 520 stores in a 5.6 million square foot spread.
“At Mall of America, the safety and security of our guests, tenants, and team members is our top priority,” a statement read.
“We are currently in the process of testing a variety of options that may allow us to further enhance our advanced security systems at Mall of America.”
The megamall was placed on lockdown after the Aug. 4 shooting, in which a gunman opened fire after he and his friends got into an argument with another party. No one was injured and the suspects were nabbed a week later while getting haircuts in Chicago, hundreds of miles away.
Several weeks later, a man was arrested for allegedly robbing two stores in the mall while armed with a rifle, according to The Minneapolis Star Tribune.
The incidents came after two people were shot and injured inside the mall on New Year’s Eve in 2021.
Firearms are currently prohibited in the shopping center, but gun rights advocates contend that the mall does not have the authority to prevent shoppers from carrying them.
Minnesota law “prevents landlords from restricting lawful carry,” Rob Doar, senior vice president of the Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus, told the Star.