I was in a store that I have been a good customer at (recent purchase on December 23rd) for less than 45 seconds when the manager approached me and asked me to leave. When I asked her why, she said that I looked like someone who had left the store with some underwear under her arm.
I informed her that I was not that person, and she commenced to say that I must leave.
I asked her what grounds she had for this horrible accusation.
She said that I looked like a woman that had been in a police line-up.
I once again mentioned that I was not the person, told her that I would have her get the police there if I hadn't had an appt. in five minutes with a business client, and left my name and driver's license.
She was very rude and insisted that I was the woman because I fit the description. She continued to tell me that I was not allowed in either that store or any OTHER clothing store in Montecito, CA. This is INSANE!
(Her insistence that I fit the "description" made no sense either, as I was wearing sun-glasses and a hat. She couldn't even see my face.)
There were other people in the shop. I recently moved to the area and my reputation is VERY important as I am trying to make a living as a yoga teacher and editor.
The "manager" was very vague with her explanations. She didn't seem to care about my name, nor the fact that I told her that I am a good customer and have just purchased items days ago.
I'm very distressed by this. After my appt. I phoned the police.
They informed me to contact the detectives tomorrow.
The manager refused to listen to ANYTHING I had to say. She merely told me that if she were wrong she "owed me a big apology."
Isn't being falsely accused of a CRIME and being thrown out publically a crime in itself?
It seems to me to be unconstitutional to say the least.
I want to file a complaint and perhaps file a claim for slander.
I feel traumatized by this as I am NOT a criminal! This store had no problem taking my $200 six days ago, either.
(The manager mentioned that the woman who walked out with the underwear did so weeks ago!)
Can I do anything?
I feel as if I've been violated. I kept telling her "you have the wrong person!" to no avail. It was horrible!
I hope I can do something.
I also called the store when I got home and left a message for the owner, stating what happened.
I'm really upset by this, my heart is palpitating and I feel frightened even though I AM INNOCENT!
Diana Rose Hartmann, MA