Fellow Marines identified the injured man as Cpl. Phillip Duggan, 24, who spent part of Black Friday recuperating at Eisenhower Army Medical Center with injuries that were not life-threatening.
Tracey Attaway, 39, of Waynesboro, Ga., was jailed and charged with armed robbery, aggravated assault and possession of a knife in the commission of a crime.
Orvin Smith, a sales manager at Best Buy, said the incident occurred about 1:15 p.m. when a man was seen on surveillance videos placing a laptop under his jacket. Store staff asked Attaway to return the merchandise, and the situation began to escalate.
"He was really irate. A whole lot of energy. ... he finally let go of the laptop, ran out the front door, knocked one of my employees down and pulled out a knife so he could make sure he could get out the front door," Smith said.
Outside the door were four Marines and seven volunteers collecting donations for Toys for Tots.
"(Duggan) clotheslined him, and after that he kind up got up and started swinging a knife around," Smith said.
Gunnery Sgt. Robert Richie said Attaway "came over the top and got (Duggan) in the back."
Attaway ran again but didn't get far before Richie, several other Marines and members of the store's loss-prevention team tackled him in the parking lot and held him until deputies arrived.
Gunnery Sgt. Sherry Barrera, who also serves as the Toys for Tots coordinator, opted to close operations for the day.
"When a Marine gets injured, we just shut it down, go to the hospital, make sure he's OK and make sure he gets proper treatment," she said.
Barrera said Duggan joined the unit about three months ago. Although she has had the opportunity to drill with Duggan only a few times, she said she had heard wonderful things about him.
"My boss, who has served with him before, did say he was an outstanding Marine," Barrera said.
According to Richmond County authorities, Attaway also tried to steal two digital cameras, an Xbox game, a PS3 game and a PS3 game controller with a combined value of $1,365.