Fired for stopping shoplifter

John Schultz says he lost his job at Whole Foods Market in Ann Arbor after he tried to stop a shoplifter from making a getaway. But the company says he went too far and violated a policy that prohibits employees from physically touching a customer - even if that person is carrying a bag of stolen goods.

Schultz says he had just punched out for a break at 7 p.m. on Sunday when he heard a commotion at the front door of the store, 3135 Washtenaw Ave. He said he came to the aid of the manager who yelled for help in stopping a shoplifter. Schultz, the manager and another employee cornered the shoplifter between two cars in the parking lot . . . .

I think that the obvious defense that Schultz could have made was that the manager asked him to stop the shoplifter. My guess is that this blanket rule against touching customers is because of fear of lawsuits.



Anonymous hecate said...

Whole Foods mandates that their employees aid and abet any crimes committed there. This is excerpted from a response I got from them when I complained about their "no concealed weapons" signs:

"Also, we have specific policies in how our Team Members respond to armed robbers and state: 'If you are ever confronted by an armed robber, cooperate completely! We have a "no heroes" policy which means that no Team Member should ever put themselves in danger when it comes to robbers, shoplifters, etc...Give the robber everything he or she wants.'"

That kind of crap is why I'll never shop there again.

12/28/2007 5:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

actually nobody asked for his help, the situation was already under control and he freaked out a bit. Honestly the guy is a little unstable.

12/28/2007 8:51 PM  
Blogger John Lott said...

Dear Anonymous:

Thanks for writing, but it would be useful if you had a link or some evidence to back up your statement.

12/28/2007 9:34 PM  

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