After being hit by a car in a 2020 incident, a man was awarded $4.3 million by a jury in a lawsuit against Walmart.
His lawyers say that Scott Lacy, who is from Arkansas, was working as a subcontractor in the yard and garden center at a Walmart in Tyler, Texas, in July 2020 when several employees yelled for help to catch a shoplifter.
“The employees and Mr. Lacy chased the shoplifter into the parking lot to get the stolen goods back,” his lawyers said in a release. “One of the employees then told Mr. Lacy to let the suspect go,” they added. “Mr. Lacy was walking back to Walmart when the shoplifter hit him with his car and threw him into a pole, breaking his ankle and causing him to need multiple surgeries to fix it. Mr. Lacy also got a brain damage from a blow to the head.”
Walmart was told to pay Lacy $4.3 million, and Herbert Vanderkinter, 35, of Tyler, who was accused of shoplifting, was arrested for aggravated assault with a dangerous weapon and for having warrants out for his arrest. Vanderkinter admitted guilt on January 30 and was given a 40-year prison term.
During the trial, which started on July 24, Lacy’s lawyers said that Walmart was negligent because its employees didn’t get enough training and didn’t understand the company’s policy on stealing.
Jack Walker, a lawyer for people who have been hurt, said, “If the Walmart workers had been properly trained, this whole thing could have been avoided.” “We hope this verdict sends a message to big businesses that the safety of their employees and customers should be more important than making money and selling goods.”