Atlanta radio personality wrongly accused of shoplifting www.privateofficer.com
Richardson, who is considering filing suit, said she and her boyfriend, David Smith, were held for hours by security officers at Arbor Place Mall after Smith was accused of stealing a shirt.
Richardson said the couple was approached in the food court by mall security.
“I just really don’t understand why they chose us out of everybody else that was in the mall,” said Richardson.
Richardson said the couple traveled to Douglas from Atlanta to shop somewhere different.
Smith, a rapper also known as “Montana Da Mac,” said he tried on several Polo brand shirts and bought two of them. Smith said security accused him of stealing the Polo shirt he walked into the store wearing.
The couple said they felt accused for one reason.
“Young and black …there’s no other reason,” said Smith.
Smith said he was first told surveillance video caught him, but after two hours, he said the mall told him the tape was inconclusive.
“It’s not a mistake when you detain someone for almost two hours without any evidence, without any probable cause, without a warrant…that’s false imprisonment,” said attorney Phaedra Parks.
The couple said while they were being held, the officers called them thieves.
When the couple asked for an incident report, they said they were told no.
When contacted by WSB-TV channel 2, the mall said it had no comment.
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Douglasville GA. Nov. 26, 2007
Brink’s armored guard and a suspect were injured in a shooting Monday inside the Arbor Place mall in Douglasville.
Mall general manager Bill Ball said a Brink’s armored car guard was wounded in the shooting, which occurred about 11:45 a.m. at an upper level entrance near the food court.
The guard was taken to a local hospital with injuries that Ball said did not appear to be life-threatening.
A suspect was also wounded in the gunfire, and was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital said Ball, who did not know the severity of that man’s wounds.
Ball said no shoppers or mall employees were wounded.
“Fortunately, it being a Monday morning after a major weekend, and [the mall] was not as crowded as it could have been,” Ball said.
The mall, which is just off I-20 about 20 miles west of downtown Atlanta, was locked down, with no one allowed to enter or leave the mall. The mall was reopened at 1:30 p.m., Ball said.
The shooting happened just outside the Johnny Rockets restaurant, according to one witness. Leigh Knight of Carrollton had just sat down at the restaurant with a friend and three children when she heard the shots. “It was a lot of shots, like nine,” she said. “after about the fourth one, we figured out what it was and we threw the kids under the table and we laid down on top of them.”
When she saw security run toward the shooting, she got up and left the area. “I saw a Brink’s man laying face up — he was conscious. There was another man next to him laying face down,” Knight said.
She fled to the Sports Stop store and stayed there while the mall was locked down. Sports Stop owner Paul Limbaugh said SWAT teams were roaming the mall with their guns drawn.
All schools in the county were placed on a “code yellow” alert, said Zack Spencer, director of security for Douglas County schools.
Spencer described code yellow as a “higher sense of alert,” in which all exterior doors were secured and any students outside of the buildings were brought inside.
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