MOBILE, Ala. — An Alabama woman who says she was falsely arrested for shoplifting at a Walmart and then threatened by the company after her case was dismissed has been awarded $2.1 million in damages.
A Mobile County jury on Monday ruled in favor of Lesleigh Nurse of Semmes.
Nurse said she was stopped while trying to leave the store after using a malfunctioning self-checkout. According to CBS 42 in Alabama, the woman thought she had paid, but an asset protection manager escorted her to a room and accused of her stealing.
The station reports that charges for the 11 items she was accused of stealing were dropped when Walmart did not show up for court.
However, the lawsuit states that she began receiving letters threatening a civil suit if she didn't pay $200, which was more than the amount she was originally accused of shoplifting.
Nurse claimed the arrest damaged her reputation and made it difficult for her to make a living, CBS 42 reported.
After the jury rendered its decision, Walmart issued the following statement:
“We want our customers to have a safe, pleasant shopping experience in our stores. We take measures to help prevent, identify and appropriately handle instances of theft, which is a problem for all retailers that costs the overall U.S. economy tens of billions of dollars each year. We continue to believe our associates acted appropriately. We don’t believe the verdict is supported by the evidence and the damages awarded exceed what is allowed by law. We will be filing post-trial motions.”