A man accused of trying to steal two DVD players at a Wal-Mart in Georgia died after being confronted by workers at the store. The workers have been suspended with pay and an investigation is being conducted to figure out exactly what happened.
The altercation took place on Sunday, long after the traditional frenzy of Black Friday shopping. Security video showed a man attempting to steal two DVD players in the early morning and leaving the store with the electronics. However, three workers noticed what was happening and confronted the man in the parking lot.
When police arrived on the scene, employees were on top of the man, subduing him until authorities arrived. According to one report, the shoplifter was on the ground, unresponsive and bleeding from the nose and mouth when police put him in handcuffs. They were not aware of the extent of the man's injuries, and he was later pronounced dead at a local hospital.
The employees who work exclusively for Wal-Mart have been suspended with pay while the investigation continues, but the man who worked for a security agency at the store has been let go. He "will no longer be providing services to us," Wal-Mart's spokeswoman Dianna Gee said in a statement.
"Associates are trained to disengage from situations that would put themselves or others at risk. That being said, this is still an active investigation and we're working with police to provide any assistance. No amount of merchandise is worth someone's life," she added. "(This is) truly a sad situation."
Authorities will look to surveillance tapes in the parking lot in order to further piece together what happened.
The alleged shoplifter's name is expected to be released later today but was held until family could be notified and more facts gathered.