(Adds Wal-Mart comment)
NEW YORK Nov 28 A man working for Wal-Mart
(WMT.N) was killed on Friday when a throng of shoppers surged
into a Long Island, New York, store and physically broke down
the doors, a police spokesman said.
The 34-year-old man was at the entrance of the Valley
Stream Walmart store just after it opened at 5 a.m. local time
and was knocked to the ground, the police report said.
The exact cause of death was still to be determined by a
Four shoppers, including a 28-year-old pregnant woman, were
also taken to local hospitals for injuries sustained in the
incident, police said.
Wal-Mart said it was saddened by the death of the man, who
was working for a temporary employment agency serving the
discount retailer, and by the injuries suffered by shoppers.
"The safety and security of our customers and associates is
our top priority," the world's largest retailer said in a
statement. It said the incident was still under investigation
and referred any other inquiries to local police.
The Friday after America's Thanksgiving holiday is known a
Black Friday and marks what is traditionally the busiest retail
day of the year, kicking off the Christmas shopping season.
U.S. stores across the country opened in the early hours of
Friday to offer discounts to consumers hit by a contracting
economy. Hundreds of shoppers waited on line before dawn at
some locations to secure deals on holiday gifts.
(Reporting by Michele Gershberg; Editing by Daniel Trotta
and Sandra Maler)