A Black law enforcement officer has sued Walmart after being mistaken for a serial shoplifter.
David Conners says he was shopping at a Walmart store in Fayette County, Georgia, when he was handcuffed by police who had been called to deal with a shoplifter.
“I ain’t never shoplift a day in my life. You got the wrong man,” the corrections officer said he told police officers as they detained him to investigate the situation.
Mr Conners told Atlanta’s WSB-TV that the officers even showed him video of the shoplifter stealing electronics.
But they continued to detain him even after he showed them identification that he was a Clayton County prison corrections officer and he pointed out that he had tattoos on his arms.
“That is not me,” he said he told security.
Mr Conners and his lawyer Terance Madden now claim that he was the subject of racial profiling.
“This is the very essence of profiling,” said Mr Madden.
The officers who arrested Mr Conners told him he needed to be cuffed as he was “agitated”, had the same build as the suspect and was wearing a mask.
“This could be anybody. I could have walked in there and it could have been me who got arrested,” added Mr Madden.
Mr Conners was eventually released after officers spoke with someone familiar in the case who confirmed he was not the suspect.
“We don’t tolerate discrimination of any kind and take allegations like this seriously. We are not going to comment further on this pending litigation,” Randy Hargrove, a spokesperson for Walmart, told The Independent.