Tuesday, June 19, 2018

My wife, my 5 years old girl and my mother-in-law wrongfully accused of shoplifting, what can I do?

January 25, 2013 by admin  
Filed under CCTV System

My wife, my 5 years old and my mother-in-law have been wrongfully accused of shoplifting in a shop found on most of the high streets in UK. They have been stopped outside the shop, next to a bus station and they have been accused of shoplifting by two security officers from the shop. Everything happened in Sutton, Surrey,in front of all the people waiting for their bus to arrive.
My wife has been asked to show her hands as the security officers were convinced she has a bracelet hidden under her sleeves. She explained to them that indeed she tried a bracelet which she gave to my daughter after trying it. My daughter tried it as well and she was the one that put it back on the shelf. They explained that they have followed them on the camera and that they know they have it. Because they could find anything under the sleeves they requested to see the content of their pockets, including the ones from my daughter’s jacket. Obviously they couldn’t find anything because they didn’t take anything. My wife asked them to show her the images they were keep saying about but they refused due to Data Protection Act.
As a husband I am going mad about what happened. I went to the shop next day to demand some kind of explanation. Surprisingly the manager called my wife a thief and said that I should go home and have a very long chat with wife about what happened. I’ve tried to register a complaint with her but she replied she would not accept complaints against her members of staff "from people like me".
These events took place just before Christmas and we can’t find our rest since it happened.
As both incidents have been recorded by their CCTV system we have asked them to send us the images but they are ignoring our requests.
They have send us a £10 voucher for the manager’s offensive comments and £200 for each person wrongfully accused of shoplifting. The money they are offering would help them a bit but we don’t feel that is appropriate for what the shock and embarrassment created .My wife is a Maths Teacher in a private Secondary School and I am a company director and the shop is located in our local community, so some of those people from the bus station could have been our neighbours.. What can we do in this case and what are our rights? Shall we just take the money and keep quit about it or take this matter in the county court?
I would appreciate if could let me know about similar incidents that happened to you or your friends and you have helped your children to forget about it?
Any advice will be kindly appreciated.
Gabriel

I can’t speak for the UK but my husband is retired from NYPD and has owned his own security business. One of the things they do is "loss prevention" which means they have plain clothes officers in the store and someone viewing the cameras. They all speak to each other. While they are not police officers, in the U.S. they have the legal authority to detain you if they suspect you of shoplifting until the police can arrive to arrest you. They definitely should have handled it better, asked her to come inside and then interrogate her privately rather than right on the streets, but in the U.S. they have the legal right to do so. Obviously they did not have enough evidence to detain her and let her go and certainly your pride has been hurt and you are afraid that perhaps her reputation has been damaged, but I can’t see that you have a very strong case as they acted within their legal rights. I’d take the money as a sign of them saying you were right and they were wrong and try to get it all behind you.

Comments

5 Responses to “My wife, my 5 years old girl and my mother-in-law wrongfully accused of shoplifting, what can I do?”
  1. Sans Deity says:

    Since they didn’t break the law, there’s nothing you can do. Also, you’re being a petulant child since they’ve already given you money to demonstrate their employees were wrong. Why are you still crying about it? It’s not against the law to hurt your feelings, champ.

    The next time they ask your wife to roll up her sleeves or empty her pockets, tell them no. If they want to call the police, that’s on them. Then, when they show up and your wife proves they have nothing, she has an official record of them falsely accusing her, so that if they do it AGAIN, they can be charged with harrassment. At this point they’ve done nothing illegal.
    References :

  2. Rachel says:

    I can’t speak for the UK but my husband is retired from NYPD and has owned his own security business. One of the things they do is "loss prevention" which means they have plain clothes officers in the store and someone viewing the cameras. They all speak to each other. While they are not police officers, in the U.S. they have the legal authority to detain you if they suspect you of shoplifting until the police can arrive to arrest you. They definitely should have handled it better, asked her to come inside and then interrogate her privately rather than right on the streets, but in the U.S. they have the legal right to do so. Obviously they did not have enough evidence to detain her and let her go and certainly your pride has been hurt and you are afraid that perhaps her reputation has been damaged, but I can’t see that you have a very strong case as they acted within their legal rights. I’d take the money as a sign of them saying you were right and they were wrong and try to get it all behind you.
    References :

  3. Tin-God says:

    I can understand your wife and her mothers feelings about this but if I am honest, what more do you want
    I honestly do not think you will get any more money from a court
    References :
    my head

  4. Sarah says:

    I have a friend who is a retail theft consultant and answers such questions for no fee. He says what they offered is actually greater than the norm. You could refuse this and ask for more but they do not have to agree. In that case you could see nothing or be forced to go to court. If you go to court it could be year or more before your case is resolved and there is no guarantee you will get what you seek in fact you could get less
    References :

  5. Poohcat1 says:

    Let it go to court. The burden of proof is on them. I assume your family members are innocent until proven guilty like they would be here in the US.
    References :

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