All Articles Tagged "donnell battie"
Walmart done effed up this time. A Winslow township man is suing the retailer for $1 million in damages after what he says was a traumatizing experience at a New Jersey store on the Black Horse Pike in Washington Township.
On March 14, 2010, a teenage shopper was somehow able to get on the store’s intercom system and when he did, he made a ridiculous announcement:
“Attention, Walmart customers. All black people must leave the store.”
The 16-year-old was later charged with harassment and bias intimidation in connection with that incident and a similar announcement he made in December 2009, but Donnell Battie says Walmart was negligent in failing to control access to the intercom system and that the announcement was “reasonably likely to harass or intimidate black people.”
I’d be willing to ride with him on that comment but later in the lawsuit he just starts doing too much to try to get paid. The middle-aged man claims he has needed medical care due to the incident’s impact and that the situation caused “severe and disabling emotional and psychological harm, resulting in depression, anxiety, anger, loss of sleep, loss of appetite, paranoia, anti-social tendencies and loss of enjoyment in life activities.”
If you’ve ever shopped in Walmart, you could claim those same reactions on any given day inside that breeding ground for foolishness. But Battie’s lawyer insists the prank pulled by the teen was one of many racial incidents his client was subjected too in the recent past.
“Prior to this, he was receiving medical care for various issues related to being discriminated against,” his attorney, John Klamo said. “Here, he was in a public place and again prejudice rears its ugly head.”
A Walmart spokesman apologized for the incident and said the company was “appalled” by the “mean-spirited” act. The retailer has also “updated our intercom system in the store to prevent this from happening in the future.”
Meanwhile, Battie’s complaint, initially filed in Superior Court in March, was moved to federal court in Camden on May 10. An attorney for Walmart requested the change after Klamo declined to limit the amount of damages sought to $75,000. He said he will continue to seek damages of $1 million from the corporation.
I’m pretty sure he should’ve gone for the 75. I just don’t see 1 million happening but maybe a gift card is in order? What do you think?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
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