Lincoln Park Kroger employee says she was fired after 31 years for trying to stop shoplifter

Beverly Bennett has filed a lawsuit against store

A Lincoln Park Kroger employee has been fired after 31 years for trying to stop a customer from shoplifting.

LINCOLN PARK, Mich. – A Lincoln Park Kroger employee said she was fired after 31 years for trying to stop a customer from shoplifting.

Beverly Bennett, 61, said she lost her job after confronting a shoplifter who was trying to steal a grocery cart filled with liquor. She is now taking the company to court.

Bennett said her customers are being told she retired. She said that’s not true. She said she was fired.

“No, I didn’t retire. I didn’t have a retirement party. I didn’t say bye to anybody, none of that. Because I was terminated because I thought I was doing the right thing,” Bennett said. “This is devastating.”

Bennett said all employees were instructed how to approach shoplifters because it was happening every day. Last fall, a man tried to rush out of Kroger with a grocery cart full of liquor. The alarm went off at the exit. Bennett asked for the shopper’s receipt, stood in front of the cart and swung a basket at the grocery cart.

“I swung it at the basket and I told him, ‘Don’t touch it. You’re not getting this cart,’” she said.

Her attorney Greg Rohl says that her Kroger coworkers celebrated her and considered her a hero that day.

But Kroger fired Bennett for swinging the basket at the customer’s grocery cart, according to Bennett.

Bennett is filing a lawsuit because she said she did not violate any Kroger policies and that her employee record over the past 31 years has been flawless. She said she feels cast aside because of her age.

Local 4 asked the Kroger Corporation to comment on the lawsuit and got the following response:

“I shared your request forward with the division team in Michigan. They will reach out if they have something to share, but typically we do not comment on ongoing litigation.”

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Local 4 Defender Shawn Ley is an Emmy award-winning journalist who has been with Local 4 News for more than a decade.

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