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Woman in Mobile County awards over $2 million after shoplifting case was dismissed

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A jury in Mobile County awarded a Semmes woman $2.1 million dollars in damages today after the woman was arrested for shoplifting that she claims never took place.

Lesleigh Nurse filed a lawsuit in 2016 alleging that she was stopped by Walmart employees who did not believe her when she said that she had paid for her groceries and that she was later arrested on warrants for shoplifting. The lawsuit states that she then received letters from a Florida law firm threatening to file a civil suit against her if she did not send the firm $200 to settle the case.

Nurse claims she paid for the groceries but that the self-checkout machine froze. She also stated that the $200 she was being asked to pay was beyond that of the price of the groceries she was accused of stealing.

An expert testified in the case that Walmart and other large retailers have firms send letters like these often in states that it is legal. The expert also said that Walmart has likely made “hundreds of millions of dollars” from doing so.

Lacey Alexander is a digital intern for Alabama Public Radio.
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