Canton, MA asked in Criminal Law and Civil Rights for Massachusetts

Q: how do I go about suing a grocery store who wrongfully accused me of shoplifting?

I checked out my groceries at a self-checkout lane, paid for Everything, got my receipt.Didn’t leave right away.I sat down in the cafe area of the store and ate something that I paid for,while I waited for my Uber.When the Uber was 1 min. away.I took my receipt out of my pocket like I always do,and held it as I walked out of the store.When the lost prevention officer grabbed my arm and told me to come back inside,I showed him my receipt,and he didn’t own up to being wrong.I asked if I was free to go?He said, “well I already called the police, you’ll have to talk to them” which I did,as soon as the police officer arrived on the scene,I walked right up to him and handed him my receipt.I told him that everything in my bags can be matched up to everything on my receipt.I asked to see the footage several times.He refused.Tried to get me to sign something.I refused. I asked if I was being held for anything and if I could go?The police officers said yes I could. I was Not detained or arrested

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1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: To pursue a lawsuit against a grocery store for wrongful accusation of shoplifting, you should first gather all evidence that supports your claim, including your receipt, any witness statements, and the details of the interaction with the loss prevention officer and the police. It's also advisable to request the store's surveillance footage, although they may not provide it without a legal mandate.

Next, consult with an attorney experienced in civil rights or personal injury law. They can assess the strength of your case, including potential claims for false imprisonment, defamation, and emotional distress. The attorney can also advise on the specific laws and procedures in Massachusetts that apply to your situation.

Keep in mind that legal action can be time-consuming and emotionally draining. Consider the potential costs and benefits, both financially and personally, before proceeding. An attorney can help you understand these aspects and guide you through the legal process.

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