CVS Strangling Case – family of alleged Chicago shoplifter outraged

The deadly assault of a Chicago customer in a CVS drugstore is under investigation and the store manager will not be allowed to return to work until the probe is completed, the Breaking News Center reported.

The customer was suspected of shoplifting.

“We are investigating this unfortunate incident and are fully cooperating with police,” CVS spokesman Michael DeAngelis said. He refused to discuss company policy regarding the handling of customers suspected of shoplifting, according to the Tribune. The store manager declined to comment.

Chicago police have indicated they will not charge the employee, who put the 35-year-old customer in a chokehold. The customer’s death has been ruled a homicide by the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office.

The victim’s ex-wife expressed anger and frustration over his death as a result of a minor shoplifting allegation. She said the man was accused of stealing toothpaste and crayons and disagreed with the decision by police not to press charges.

“How’s it accidental?” Balboa said. “You’re choking the [expletive] out of somebody. He should be fired. He should be facing criminal charges. You don’t take someone’s life over toothpaste.”

The incident occurred at about 11 a.m. Saturday at the CVS Pharmacy located in the 2600 block of South Pulaski Road. Authorities say he was chased out of the store and fell unconscious during a struggle with the employee in an alley next to the building.

Our law firm recently settled a case against a Chicago area store in a similar incident. In our case, a store employee chased down an alleged shoplifter outside the store and repeatedly struck our client with a blunt object. Our plaintiff sustained multiple facial fractures and head injuries.

It has not been reported if the victim’s family has yet retained a Chicago injury lawyer to pursue a civil case against CVS.

Click here to read the story as reported by the Chicago Sun-Times and NBC News.