Walmart employees fired after disarming gunman. - Page 2

Walmart employees fired after disarming gunman.

This is a discussion on Walmart employees fired after disarming gunman. within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; I guess Walmarts definition of Lose Prevention doesn't include Lose of Life....

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Thread: Walmart employees fired after disarming gunman.

  1. #16
    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
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    I guess Walmarts definition of Lose Prevention doesn't include Lose of Life.
    Don't believe what you hear and only half of what you see!
    -Tony Soprano


  2. #17
    VIP Member Array chiefjason's Avatar
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    The ignorance of this policy is that Walmart allows "reasonable force" to limit the shoplifters movements, and LP are the ones hired to do it. So they allow the LP guys try to hold shoplifters, but do not allow them to defend themselves in a life or death situation? If you don't want them to defend themselves, that's fine. Company policy should be to be a good witness and follow at a distance. But it's not. Company policy states that they can go hands on. What do they expect? They'll likely lawyer up, then settle out of court. That's my guess. I can't see how Walmart goes into court and explains that they want to own both sides of this argument. That you can use force only until you are met with force. That's a dumb policy that will get someone hurt or killed. From the article....

    "AP09 is Walmart's policy on dealing with shoplifters. A copy obtained by KSL shows employees are allowed to use "reasonable force" to limit movements of struggling suspects. If a weapon comes out, however, associates must "disengage" and "withdraw," the policy states."

    I bet policy states that the suspect is held in the LP room. Nothing like telling your employees to grab a guy, put him in a small room, then withdraw now that your within bad breath distance.
    Last edited by chiefjason; February 11th, 2011 at 02:57 PM. Reason: grammer
    I prefer to live dangerously free than safely caged!

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  3. #18
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    Policy has to be informed by state law, and that varies all over the place as discussed here often in the past. And asking LP to hold someone using reasonable force is really really looking for trouble if that is indeed the LP directive from Bentonville.

    No trade secrets need be divulged, but do they even provide serious training to their LP folks or do they just say "keep an eye on folks." Good luck.

  4. #19
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Walmart Statement of Ethics

    Health and Safety Responsibility

    We’re committed to the health and safety of our customers, members, and associates, because we care for one another. Conducting our business in compliance with all health and safety laws is crucial to protecting each other from harm. As an associate of Walmart, always comply with all relevant health and safety laws and policies. By following these, we can create and maintain a safe shopping and working environment for our customers, members, and associates.

    Source - http://ethics.walmartstores.com/Inte...nsibility.aspx
    Additionally any current Walmart employee not understanding of corporate and store polices toward anything can learn more via; https://www.mywalmart.com

    Don't like or agree with Walmart employee policys, as being an employee...Then well employment is at will; For both you and the employer (Walmart).
    Life as policys go is no different though at most any other major retailer of stuff & things as well as banks toowho have and literally _giveaway_ to thieves/robbers money too...As rather than risk employee and customer lives.

    Walmart and most others definition of 'Loss Prevention' by policy, most definitely does not include loss of human life.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

  5. #20
    VIP Member Array chiefjason's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hopyard View Post
    Policy has to be informed by state law, and that varies all over the place as discussed here often in the past. And asking LP to hold someone using reasonable force is really really looking for trouble if that is indeed the LP directive from Bentonville.

    No trade secrets need be divulged, but do they even provide serious training to their LP folks or do they just say "keep an eye on folks." Good luck.
    The local LP Mgr is a former LEO. That seems to be pretty normal after talking to him. A friend of my mom's is a magistrate and does LP from the camera room part time for a local clothing store in the mall. It's kind of like the off duty LEO's doing security. Can't speak for the ones in the article, but it would not surprise me if one or more of them had a LEO background.
    I prefer to live dangerously free than safely caged!

    "Our houses are protected by the good Lord and a gun. And you might meet 'em both if you show up here not welcome son." Josh Thompson "Way Out Here"

  6. #21
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    With all due respect Janq, I think you're missing the reason they were fired. It wasn't because they took him to the back room. That was approved and is standard procedure. I worked LP a few years ago (not Walmart) and that was just how things were done. They were fired for resisting him after he pulled the gun. The part of the policy they violated wasn't taking him to the room, it was because they didn't "disengage" and "withdraw" after a weapon was drawn as the policy states.

  7. #22
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    I got that part Kralbec.
    I'd copied and quoted that item in full.

    Consider though that by _other_ Wal-Mart theft accounts beyond this that have been very much and widely posted here at DC.com (where other personnel have found them self fired too) consistently the position by Wal-Mart has been to contact and ask for return of objects as to give the thief potential to 'make it right', but to not give chase (as into parking lots) nor to put hands on persons (as to restrain) nor to attempt to stop an actively fleeing thief.

    If one looked at this article singular without ever having noticed any other article toward incidents of same at the same business, then yes one could and likely would walk away thinking what you state.
    But fact is go look up again here or anywhere publicly (Google) any other Wal-Mart specific theft case and you too will see they have been for over a decade quite consistent on this. Same as have Home Depot and Dominos pizza as I mentioned (both of these too are very well and widely known by policy) as well as for that matter the industry wide position of banks be they large or small.

    Once again nothing happens in a vacuum...For every ending of a story, there is always a beginning.

    The first Loss Prevention agent made an error both tactically and procedurally, which from there set himself up AND his three co-workers up for both employee regs. failure AND very real world functional failure too...As they learned the very hard and dangerous way.

    Not even in jails or prisons, never mind real police, will a person who has shown disregard for law be taken into a small room...And not expect some degree of resistance.
    Further police would not do this and _know not to do this_ without first and foremost assuming this person may be armed and concealing other tools that might hurt (!) them period, not to mention placing themself into a small box of a room with no means for themself to flee or escape should this person who actively disregards laws might decide to turn against them.

    To the theory that possibly any one of these four might be law enforcement, that too is weak as otherwise the person would not be sweating losing ajob at Wal-Mart.
    Also such a person would know better than to walk the person into a back room but rather escort them out of the store at the front to be met by local law enforcement OR even placed under arrest right thereon the spot by the LEO being employed as a loss prevention agent.

    It makes no sense, otherwise...Which is exactly how Wal-Mart and I both see things.

    - Janq

    P.S.
    I have not worked loss prevention, but I have in my youth when I was younger and dumber but up for 'adventure' worked as a doorman at a used to be notorious for trouble (fists, boots, knives and guns) club in early '90s DC and after that as a lone man 'security' for a crew of female adult entertainers that worked out call. This long before I simma'd down, got married and became the 'Janq' I am today.

    If there is one thing I learned from those past experiences it is this;
    1) Space is your friend while enclosed spaces (such as directly in front of a bar, a bathroom or closet) is your enemy...As related to hand to hand combat aka a fight (!).
    2) Most people do not AT ALL take kindly to being put hands on and handled, regardless of gender or age...Nor actual guilt.
    3) If you are not wearing a po-po badge then your authority is tenuous at best and respected only as far as you can maintain respect. Do not gain respect from the outset or lose respect as in the interim, then the ending will not be respectful. Guaranteed.

    I now knowing better personally would never think to sequester any person to any place other than out the door among the public eye view.
    For my own personal safety as well as that of my co-workers and clients (unassociated third party customers), and because in this day and age all it takes is a faked heart attack or a person with a stress disorder to result in a civil suit/ or civil rights claim against me personally and that of my employer.
    Leave the cop work to cops who by state laws are empowered and broadly protected.
    I'm not gonna get damaged, disabled, killed or forced into bankruptcy over some moron/crook who wants to five finger discount an item that has the retail value of a Huffy.
    One has to know when, where and how to pick ones battles....And as they say; Which hill is the one you wish to die on.
    As far as I know Walmart does not pay much more than minimum wage, all things being relative to ones expecations and local economy of scale.
    I would not choose to die on a Walmart owned hill. Especially when I know outright that neither crime nor defense against same on their behalf does not pay (!).
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

  8. #23
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    It seems contradictory to me to have a loss prevention room for detaining people and a policy of not taking a thief there.
    I havenít heard any of the journalists who volunteered to be waterboarded asking to have their fingernails wrenched out with pliers, or electrodes attached to their genitals.

  9. #24
    VIP Member Array shockwave's Avatar
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    Gotta go with Janq here (as usual).

    Once the LP staff have the guy in the small room, they've just put themselves in a killing box. Much better to confront him and recover the merchandise out on the floor, handle it smooth and cool.

    "Excuse us, Sir, but if you'd like to buy that computer we can do this here at the register or if you aren't interested, we can put it back in the box for you."

    LEO are already on the way. They can handle this.

    But these LP guys, they aren't LEO, and they have zero authority to detain and frisk a citizen.

    Now, all that said, once he starts pulling out a gun, they have no choice but to disarm him, as otherwise he might just decide to execute the lot of them. Their jobs are immaterial at that point. They have to live to see another day. So once it all gets to that stage, they're already fired.

    Again, as Janq says (because he's always correct), other chains and franchises have the same policy: get physical with the customer, get fired. While we'd like to live in a world where rent-a-cops can tackle a shoplifter and beat him into submission, that isn't this world. At the end of the day, it's a $200 piece of Chinese crap. Wal-Mart spends more than that on the cleaning products they use to clean the store after hours. To them, it's nothing. LP staff need to act in accord with that reality.
    "It may seem difficult at first, but everything is difficult at first."

  10. #25
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    Uhhhh in most states LP does have the legal authority to detain and apprehend a suspect using reasonable force. I know in Indiana, I am allowed to go hands on with a resisting suspect, I am sure this is the case in most states. Some states have even gone so far as to declare that a security or LP officer is the same as a peace officer with full powers.
    "The value you put on the lost will be determined by the sacrifice you are willing to make to seek them until they are found."

  11. #26
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Chris,

    I'd not go so far as to say most, not at all.
    Some yes...Definitely, and to those at varying degrees.
    But most, not so much.

    Even still if it were most or even for that matter all; My point remains...What is functionally wisest.
    A given state law based 'LP' person might be allowed certain abilities (but not 'peace officer' powers...Only railroad related LPs are generally enabled such powers universally state to state).

    But that does not override both corporate/employer policy & regs nor most importantly; Common sense as related to preservation of loss for ones self as a living being (!).
    For folk who want to be a police and have 'police powers' they should go to academy and become a police actual and for real; To be given a policemans badge with pay AND personal liability protections as whihc is generally state to state imbued upon said professional persons.

    Otherwise well good luck to those folk who wish to play po-po at their local retailer trying to pull off a wrist lock and arm bar folk into backrooms to ostensibly detain them, in the hope that they will both comply and be docile as a reaction until the real police show up.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

  12. #27
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atctimmy View Post
    It seems contradictory to me to have a loss prevention room for detaining people and a policy of not taking a thief there.
    ATC,

    The article does not state though that the room was for detaining people, which is key.

    It was the afternoon of Jan. 13 when employees at the store saw Trent Allen Longton unwrap a Netbook computer in the electronics section and stuff it under his clothes.

    Asset protection coordinator Poulsen met him at the door and ushered him back to the loss prevention room to confront him. Not long after, Ray and Richins -- both asset protection associates -- filtered in, followed by Stewart, an assistant manager, to witness.

    Moments after he pulled out the small laptop, the workers say Longton also pulled out a handgun and charged toward the closed office door. Ray, Richins and Stewart were in the way. He grabbed Stewart as his way to get out.
    It only states it was a "loss prevention room".
    Dollars to donuts it was nothing but a small back office where they stowed their coats, lunches and walkie-talkie chargers among a desk or two with a bank of CCTV connected monitors.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

  13. #28
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shockwave View Post
    ...Once the LP staff have the guy in the small room, they've just put themselves in a killing box....

    ...But these LP guys, they aren't LEO, and they have zero authority to detain and frisk a citizen....
    Agreed, very much.

    Now, all that said, once he starts pulling out a gun, they have no choice but to disarm him, as otherwise he might just decide to execute the lot of them. Their jobs are immaterial at that point. They have to live to see another day. So once it all gets to that stage, they're already fired.
    Yup. A pyrrhic victory at best. : |
    Folk in these positions have to think on their feet and not get themself sucked into/trapped by the conditions...And by that allow their on morals & ethics (or tht of co-workers) to override employer policy & regs never mind their own horsesense (!).

    ...While we'd like to live in a world where rent-a-cops can tackle a shoplifter and beat him into submission, that isn't this world....LP staff need to act in accord with that reality.
    Yup.
    The world used to be this way, 30+ years ago.
    But it ain't 1981 or '71 or '61 or '51....Anymore.
    In the day it used to not be uncommon for store owners and staff to stop, frisk (!) and detain folk for all manner of everything on 'store property' up to and including fully bogus accusations. Just like a 'police'.
    They would hold up in court in those days too if even it was debated and not just an assigned per police and store owners/staff statement to be an 'open & shut' case.
    Those days though are gone. Dead. Welcome to modern world reality; It's now the year 2011.
    Today you put hands on a person, you better well be prepared to die either in court, or possibly right there on the store floor. Over what? Some insured low to no value nothing, that on 'Black Friday' sold for less than a tank of gas.
    Corps/employers, and their insurers as well as investors, to the most part know this and they aren't stupid people.
    They are not stuck in a time warp past by mentality, nor can they afford to be so.
    Employees such as these four would do well to update their programming as we no longer live in a time space of 'Happy Days' nor even 'Cagney & Lacey' and 'Magnum P.I.'...Whether such type 'loss prevention' employee career folk like it or not; Regardless of what a given states laws might be and allow.

    I feel bad that four men, possibly family men, lost their livelihood as related to a dirt bag thief.
    But at the end of the day they made active and immediate choices that jammed themself up, as contrary to their employers policies.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

  14. #29
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    This whole thing is an example where "survival mode" and "policy manual" are in conflict with each other.
    Turn the election's in 2014 to a "2A Revolution". It will serve as a 1994 refresher not to "infringe" on our Second Amendment. We know who they are now.........SEND 'EM HOME. Our success in this will be proportional to how hard we work to make it happen.

  15. #30
    GM
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    Quote Originally Posted by dukalmighty View Post
    I can sense a lawsuit coming
    ... and hopefully a very big one!
    "The Second Amendment: America's Original Homeland Security"

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