Black Friday Shoplifter Death Incident Under Walmart Probe

The death of a man known as the Black Friday Shoplifter is still a mystery after he was tackled and placed in a headlock by store employees last weekend.

Police say the man walked out of the Lithonia, Georgia store carrying two unpaid DVD players when he was grabbed by two store associates along with a private security guard early Sunday morning.

Police arrived finding the man held down by the employees. Officers placed him in handcuffs not realizing he was unresponsive with blood covering his face and mouth.

He was transported to hospital where he was pronounced dead.

“No amount of merchandise is worth someone’s life,” Walmart spokeswoman Dianna Gee said in a statement.

The company said two workers were suspended with pay, and the security contractor will no longer work at the store, located about 15 miles east of downtown Atlanta.

Gee said two store employees involved in the confrontation were suspended with pay as their investigation continues.

She said a contractor who worked in security at the store “will no longer be providing services to us.”

In the statement released to The Associated Press, Gee said the man’s death was “truly a sad situation.”

“Associates are trained to disengage from situations that would put themselves or others at risk,” she said. “That being said, this is still an active investigation and we’re working with police to provide any assistance.”

The company said it was reviewing what happened to determine whether proper policies were followed.Lithonia police did not return a message seeking comment.

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