The Richmond Register

Local News

April 18, 2010

Woman sues department store over shoplifting accusation

RICHMOND — A Berea woman is suing a major department store chain, claiming employees at its Richmond location wrongfully accused her of shoplifting and humiliated her.

Shannon Broughton filed the suit against Kohl’s Department Stores following an alleged March 23 incident at the company’s store on the Robert R. Martin Bypass in Richmond.

The suit was filed by attorney David Wickersham with the Richmond firm of Coy, Gilbert and Gilbert.

In the complaint, Broughton alleges that she went to the store on March 23 to purchase clothing.

As Broughton paid for her purchases and attempted to leave, she was stopped by store employees and accused of shoplifting, the complaint states.

Broughton provided proof of her purchases, the suit claims, but employees continued to detain her. The suit alleges that Broughton “was restrained by Kohl’s openly and obviously in the store in an unreasonable manner and for an unreasonable period of time” after she presented proof that she had purchased the merchandise.

The suit also alleges that Broughton was forced to remove her clothing while detained by employees, causing embarrassment and humiliation.

The Richmond Police Department had no record of the alleged incident being reported by the store, Chief Larry Brock said Friday.

Broughton is seeking compensatory, punitive and incidental damages against the store in the case as well as attorney’s fees. She also is seeking a jury trial in the case.

Court records indicate that a notice of the suit was sent by certified mail to a corporate office in Louisville, but Kohl’s has yet to respond to the suit.

The suit is assigned to Madison Circuit Judge William G. Clouse.

Brian Smith may be reached at bsmith@richmondregister.com or at 624-6694. For breaking news, follow Brian at www.twitter.com/RR_BSmith.

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