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Belt buckle saves store worker in barrage of bullets

PHILADELPHIA – A belt buckle saved a supermarket employee by stopping a stray bullet from a shootout outside a Philadelphia grocery store, police said.

Bienvenido Reynoso, 38, said he was about to take a hand truck outside late Wednesday afternoon when shots started flying, so he hit the ground inside the store, WPVI reported. Surveillance video shows a snack cake being shot off the shelf above his head.

Police said a man was shot in the stomach on the street outside the store in the Gray’s Ferry section of the city. No arrests have been made.

Reynoso said he didn’t realize he was hit until someone pointed out a hole in his shirt, and then he discovered the bullet in his belt buckle.

Christian Vinas, 21, working behind the counter, also dove to the ground when the shooting began.

“That has to be God,” Vinas said. “Out of all the places you could get hit in the body, you get hit right there. It was truly amazing.”

Vinas, who moved to Philadelphia from Florida about a month ago, said it was the second shooting in the past week in the neighborhood.

Three bullet holes – two in the doors and one in a window by the snack cakes – remained unrepaired Thursday morning.

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