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Violence escalates during PS3 launch [update 9]

Kyle Orland

Yesterday it was BB guns, today a report from a Putnam, Connecticut PS3 line involves real guns. Early this morning, two armed gunmen approached a line of PlayStation 3 hopefuls gathered outside of the Putnam, Conn., Wal-Mart, demanding money from those in line. "One of the patron's resisted. That patron was shot," police Lt. J. Paul Vance told the AP. There has been word of the victim's condition and the hunt for the two gunmen continues.

Elsewhere, in Elk Grove, California, two different gunmen walked into a GameStop yesterday morning and made off with four PS3s. No injuries were reported and the robbers are still at large.

Reports of general chaos and disorder in PS3 lines across the country have been pouring in all day. Engadget has collected links to many of them, and we'll update here with any others as we hear about them.

[Thanks to everyone who sent both these stories in.]

Read - Shot waiting in line
Read - Gunmen Steal PS3s

[Update 1: Thanks to Adam Reineke for sending in the below video of people racing for the official start of a line outside an Ames, IA, Best Buy at a 12:01 a.m. Thursday]

[Update 2: reports on "a scene straight out of Lord of the Flies" at a Lawrence, KS, Best Buy Thursday morning]

[Update 3: A "small riot" erupted outside a Henrietta, NY, Best Buy this morning. Thanks dresden]

[Update 4: A Gamespot forum poster tells of his mugging right outside a Manchester, CT Mall this morning. Thanks minus_273.]

[Update 5: Via Kotaku: A man goes to the hospital after slamming into a metal flagpole during a stampede at a West Bend Wal-mart. Thanks Agrajag.]

[Update 6: A UNC-Wilmington student gets beaten and has two PS3s stolen as he removes them from his trunk. Thanks Curtis.]

[Update 7: A 17-year old has his PS3 nabbed at gunpoint in Pennsylvania's Lehigh Valley. Thanks Tucker.]

[Update 8: Reader Ethan Netland reports on a chaotic scene at the Best Buy in South Portland, Maine. According to Netland, police and employees prevented the mob of 250 gathered people from lining up until the store lights went off and the lights went off at 10 p.m. last night. At that point, as Netland describes it, "all hell broke loose. People were shoved to the ground, punched and elbowed in the face, and the Best Buy Employee handing out numbers was mobbed with people. They tried to maintain order, but were incredibly unsuccessful. ... One older man who had been trying to get a system for his 13-year-old son had nearly been trampled and had injured his leg, but got a place in line."]

[Update 9: Two armed men steal five PS3s from an Englewood, Ohio EBGames. Thanks Keaton2008.]

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