Pepper spray found in backpack donated to Goodwill

Local News

DES MOINES — A Goodwill location in Des Moines was evacuated after a small can of pepper spray was dispensed in a backpack for sale at the store.

The pepper spray was in a backpack that was brought into a store on SE 14th Street. The pepper spray eventually fell out, and that’s when a customer picked it up.

“I was looking at one of the bins in the back of the store when all of a sudden I started coughing really bad, sneezing, and my eyes started burning,” one woman told Local 5.

The incident is being used as a reminder to clean out items before donating them.

“I ask just to go through those one more time just to make sure that when you’re bringing your items in that there’s nothing in there that’s accidentally coming through the doors that you didn’t attend on donating,” said Goodwill Director of Marketing Carly Flaws.

The donated backpack did pass through an employee check, but was still able to make its way onto the sales floor.

To view a list of items not accepted as donations at Goodwill, click here.

©TEGNA Inc. 2019. All Rights Reserved.