Woman Sues Walgreens After Being Shot 7 Times By Employee Who Believed They Were Shoplifting

by Tommy Grant

In Nashville, Tennessee, 25-year-old Travonsha Ferguson, who was 27 weeks pregnant, is suing Walgreens after being shot seven times by an employee outside a store in April 2023. Ferguson and another woman were believed to be shoplifting cosmetics. The attack forced Ferguson to undergo an emergency C-section to save her premature baby, who was born with health complications, including a heart defect.

At a press conference, Ferguson’s lawyer, L. Chris Stewart, criticized Walgreens for allowing the employee, Mitarius Boyd, to use personal firearms against suspected shoplifters, which contradicts the company’s ‘no chase’ policy. Despite the severe injuries Ferguson sustained, requiring her to wear a colostomy bag, and her child’s ongoing health risks, the employee involved was not indicted but was later fired for policy violations.

The lawsuit accuses Walgreens of negligence and failing to ensure the safety of its customers by not providing adequate security measures. Stewart emphasized that it wasn’t the employee’s role to endanger customers’ lives and criticized the excessive use of force in the situation. Ferguson’s family seeks justice, highlighting the undue trauma and lasting consequences of the incident on both Ferguson and her child.

According to police reports, Boyd followed the pair out to their car and when confronting them, was sprayed with pepper spray. Boyd told police that he feared for his life and did not know if they had a weapon, and that’s when he drew his firearm and fired the shots.

The investigation to this point shows that Walgreens team leader Mitarius Boyd, 21, was notified by another employee that two females were stealing items from the store. Boyd said he saw the women placing items into a store cart and into a large over-the-shoulder bag. Boyd said he began recording the women with his cell phone and followed them as they exited the store without paying for the merchandise. Boyd said as the women began placing items into the trunk of their car, he made his way to the rear side of the vehicle. He said one of the women pulled a can of mace and began spraying it at him. Boyd said he then pulled his semi-automatic pistol and began shooting, saying he was in fear and didn’t know if they were armed. The women fled in the car. Boyd went back into the store and called 911.

via nashville.gov

Going after a suspected shoplifter as a regular employee, as in not security, is not a part of your job description, nor is it a reasonable action for an armed citizen to engage in. This incident could have, and should have been avoided at all costs.

Read the full article here

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