Target has announced that they will be pulling the sale of Pokémon, MLB, NBA and NFL trading cards after an incident outside a Target location that escalated to a gun being drawn in a dispute about the cards.
Starting May 14, Target will be indefinitely suspending the sale of trading cards across its stores after an incident in the parking lot outside of a Target location in Brookfield, Wisconsin. This now marks Target following in Wal-Mart’s footsteps, as they made a similar announcement earlier this month, pulling the cards from sale citing inappropriate customer behaviour and increased demand.
Originally reported by website Bleeding Cool, a photo taken from a Target location shows signage explaining the suspension. “To ensure the safety of our guests and team members, effective May 14, MLB, NFL, NBA and Pokemon Trading Cards will no longer be sold in stores until further notice”.
This suspension will effect all Target locations across the United States, and marks another sad day in the collecting and card trading space. The hobby has grown more popular in recent years due to fans who originally participated in the hobby as kids returning to the space to now find that the old cards they once played with could actually be worth some serious coin. The rarity of the cards has also been exacerbated by production restrictions caused by COVID-19.
On May 7, a 35-year old man was assaulted by four men ranging from 23-35 years of age as he left the store. The victim, who is a valid concealed carry permit holder, was able to reach for his gun during the incident, and fortunately did not suffer any major injuries nor were there any shots fired.
Thankfully no one was harmed this time, but by the same token it is both wild and frightening that stores are having to completely stop the sale of these cards for the very safety of their employees and their customers.