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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    4

    Default Accused of Shoplifting at Walmart

    First off I would like to take the time to thank any and every one that takes the time to read my situation and can offer any advice.

    I was shopping at Walmart a few weeks ago, my first stop in Walmart was the Electronics Department where I picked up 2 DVDs and threw them into my cart. Checked my list to see what I needed next and continued on with my shopping. I ended up picking up several larger items, which made me place the DVDs in the upper area of the cart where my purse was. I stopped at the Jewelry department, made a purchase, and put the item (in a walmart bag with reciept) into my purse. Shortly thereafter I made my way to the checkout and made my purchases. I should mention at this point that during my shopping in Walmart I kept coming upon this very disheveled looking man that was flirting with me, he even bumped into me during one of the encounters and then apogized and winked at me. (weird)

    So I've made my purchases and as I was walking out the door the alarm went off, I thought nothing of it because the alarms go off there all the time. Still, I stopped, pulled my cart back inside the store and handed my reciept to one of the Walmart employee's at the door while another employee looked through the cart. They finished looking smiled and waved me through saying "You're fine sweety, these things go off all the time" at the next exit (there are two exits in the garden center one at the actual building and then another at garden center gate) so at the next exit, the walmart employee looked at my recipt, glanced through the cart and thanked me for shopping at Walmart.

    I got about 10 steps out into the parking lot when I heard a voice behind me "Hey, can I talk to you for a minnute babe?" When I turned around and said "I don't think so" I saw it was the same scruffy looking man that had been following me throughout the store. At that point I got a little nervous, and turned to keep walking... he then said "Are you sure I can't talk to you for a minnute honey?" by this time I am nervous, a little frightened, and very anoyed. I snarled back at him "Yes!, I'm SURE!" It was then that he identified himself as Walmart security and asked me if I could come back in the store with him. Still a little wary but feeling that the store would be a safe place I agreed.

    As "Scruffy" and I are walking back into the store, his whole attitude changes he's no longer hitting on me he's in "payback mode" - "Are you REALLY going to tell me that you don't know why I stopped you?" to which I replied Yes. At almost the same time I am saying yes, I look down and see the 2 DVD's that were the first items I picked up in the store in the top basket of the cart. (the layout was such: front of cart basket, purse, dvd's, back of cart basket)

    Now I feel stupid, and I'm not to good to admit... a little full of myself. This guys not hitting on me, he's security! I laughed and explained to him that I didn't realize they were there and I would glady pay for them. To which his response was "You WISH you could pay for them, you're busted!" I further try to explain that I am an honest person and this is an honest mistake, I will gladly pay for the dvd's I missed them in checkout just like the 3 Walmart employee's that searched my cart did when I came back inside the store when the alarm went off. They didn't see them, I forgot about them... it was a MISTAKE. That's when he tells me that "Maybe this will teach me a lesson and I will be nicer to people in the future" (nicer to people!!!?????) He then tell's me he's been doing this for 10 years and he knows it wasn't a mistake and that I probably "don't even have the means to pay for the items that's why I stole them" I again reiterate that I did NOT steal them, that it was an honest mistake, I showed him that I had plenty of cash to pay for the dvd's. His response was "What? Were ya gonna pay for 'em in the F***ing parking lot?!" I then realized I was not going to get anywhere with this guy he was hellbent on making my day one I wished I never got up for.

    He then take's me in a back room, photographs me and asks me to sign some paper... after glancing at the paper I see that it says shoplifting and refuse to sign it because I WAS NOT SHOPLIFTING. He then tells me that I will be recieving a letter within a few weeks, with a demand from Walmart for $200 that I can pay in payments if need be. He calls the police, they come, fingerprint me and have me sign a arrest/complaint form and let me walk out of Walmart on my own acord with a warning that if I come back to Walmart I will be arrested for tresspassing.

    I don't know what to do at this point, do I need a lawyer? Will one be provided for me? Do I have any recourse, I feel violated by "scruffy" and Walmart.

    The total for the DVD's was $37 I am in Miami FL.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,650

    Default Shoplifting Accusation - WalMart

    Given that you indicate that you were identified and followed by security at an early stage in your visit, it is likely that you were being directly videotaped from the security room from the moment "scruffy" first started to follow you.

    Given that the police were involved, you will probably receive a notice to appear in court on a shoplifting charge. You should consider getting a lawyer, and then trying to get the store security videotapes. Once you are charged, if you cannot afford a lawyer, you can petition the court to appoint a lawyer to represent you.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Thank you for your advice Aaron, the Attny advertisements have already started filling my mailbox. I definately WANT to go to court and I HOPE they have my entire trip on videotape it can only help my case.

    I just feel like this is so unjustified. I am positive that had I been "nicer" to this security person ie: responded well to his come-on's that none of this would have happened. (That, and had I been paying more attention and PAID for the DVDs before leaving the store) I feel like my civil rights have been violated and I'm not so much worried about what will happen in court (since I got some great advice and will be enlisting an attorney in my plight) I'm quite upset about not being able to shop at my local Walmart, and who's to stop "Scruffy" from doing this to someone else? What else has he been up to? I shudder to think about what his "parking lot negotiations" have entailed in the past.

    Any idea's on how to get the Walmart ban lifted?

    Thanks again to any advice, and I'd also like to thank whoever is responsible for this messsage board... it was like a lighthouse in a storm.

    I will keep everyone posted as to the outcome of this unfortunate event.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,650

    Default

    Quote Quoting NotGuilty
    Any idea's on how to get the Walmart ban lifted?
    Beyond asking very nicely? It's their store, and it's private property, so they can exclude people (within the constraints of discrimination laws) if they choose.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    139

    Default

    Do you really want the ban lifted? Do you want to ever buy from those people again. Also realise it's walmart & sams clubs you can never go to again. And the reason your mail box is getting flooded is cause now your arrest was in the local paper. Google yourself, you'll see. All thanks to walmart.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Quote Quoting Dontshoplift
    Do you really want the ban lifted? Do you want to ever buy from those people again. Also realise it's walmart & sams clubs you can never go to again. And the reason your mail box is getting flooded is cause now your arrest was in the local paper. Google yourself, you'll see. All thanks to walmart.
    First, I did "Google" myself... nothing there. As for the local paper I recieve it and I have not seen anything about this incident in the paper. I believe my mailbox is being flooded because attnys do searches of the court records in order to send out their advertisements.

    Secondly, I am really not all that upset with WALMART I am upset with one of their employee's and as far as Sams-Club we don't have that in my area any longer (that I am aware of). If when all is said and done (I am confident that my case will be thrown out, and I will recieve a not guilty verdict) I plan on writing a letter to the manager of my local Walmart explaining the situation to him and asking nicely if the ban can be lifted, or what steps I would need to take in order to have the ban lifted. If at that time (after a not guilty verdict) I am still banned from Walmart THEN I will be upset with Walmart and I wont want to shop there anyway. But for now, I see this as one perverts doing, not the entire corporation.

    Thanks for your input all the same.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    139

    Default

    Then if it's not "Walmart" your upset with why don't you contact a higher up at walmart and see if they will drop this for you after you explain. I doubt highly they will help you.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    West Virginia
    Posts
    54

    Default

    Most Wal-Marts is all floor walk not CCTV so about all that will be on tape is you checking out.

    I dought if you can get the case thrown out unless you can prove that you had no intention of stealing because it comes back to the simple fact that you left the store with unpaid for merchandise.

    However if you feel the LP crossed the boundry then call 1800WALMART and complain ask to speack to that stores district loss prevention manager (DLPM). I have played the game to act like I'm flirting just to get close enough to see down in a purse,bag, cart, etc... but I don't say anything that will be outside of how ordinary customers interact with each other.

    However allot of LP get a bad name for us think they are some superstar with women and they are watching women for the wrong reasons and step out of the boundaries and some action needs to be taken

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,650

    Default

    Quote Quoting fight or flight LP
    Most Wal-Marts is all floor walk not CCTV so about all that will be on tape is you checking out.
    That's interesting, in comparison to other "big box" stores. I guess there would be a cost-savings, but it would seem to open a door for the defense at trial to question why Wal-Mart chooses not to (a) obtain the best possible evidence, and (b) follow industry standards.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    4

    Default

    ***Just an update***

    I did contact 1-800-Walmart, who directed me to the Shoplifting Recovery/Restitution Center. After speaking with 2 employees there they tell me that they will contact the LP's manager and let them know about the inappropriate behavior. They told me the DLPM would not follow up directly with me but that there would be a record of my complaint.

    As far as getting the ban lifted, they told me that I could write a letter to a review board after 1 years time and it was not a gaurenteed route but it would be the only way to "get my rights reinstated".

    As far as the civil penalty, they told me that I would have to take that up in civil court as it could not be addressed directly with them.

    So at this point I have a court date and I plan on hiring an attny (that I cannot aford) and fighting this every step of the way. Once the "criminal" case is taken care of I will take the civil demand to court as well.

    I'll keep the board updated as new information becomes available.

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