NEW DETAILS EMERGE ON AUSTIN COUNTY ASSAULT CASE

  

More details have emerged in an assault incident that was reported Sunday night at Lindeman’s Store in Industry.

65-year-old Betty Smith of Industry told FOX 26 TV in Houston that she had went to the store just before 7pm to pick up ice cream and a honeybun for her special needs son.

Before making the purchase, Smith said she found a $50 bill on the floor. The clerk told her that she thought it might belong to a friend of hers that was in the store earlier.

As she attempted to leave, video surveillance shows one female clerk grabbed the $50 bill from her, while another female clerk and a male clerk restrained her, and then a brief shoving match ensued. They also locked the door to prevent her from leaving.

Smith told the TV station that she feared for her safety, and called her granddaughter for assistance.

The granddaughter arrived and demanded that they let her out. Footage shows the granddaughter shoving the clerk as an Austin County Sheriff’s Deputy is approaching the door, which led to her being placed in handcuffs.

Smith’s daughter arrived on the scene and was also arrested for allegedly assaulting one of the employees.

Austin County Sheriff Jack Brandes released a statement saying that statements, videos, body-worn camera video, and all evidence has been forward to the District Attorney’s Office for consideration of charges against various individuals.

The manager and the owner of Lindeman’s Store fired all three employees on Monday, and have apologized to Smith.  They have also offered to help pay the bond money and let her keep the $50.

She turned their offer down.

16 Comments

  1. I personally know Mrs.Smith and her family. Mrs.Smith happens to be a nice person and didn’t deserve to be treated in that manner. She has serious health issues. The money was on the floor. The money belonged to the floor until she picked it up and she could rightfully claim it. If I walked up on a scene and someone was handling my grandmother like that I know I would be issuing out some beat downs. The first line of customer service is never to confront the customer. You report the incident and let upper management handle the situation. Lord I pray for Mrs.Betty and hope their is a silver lining to this situation. This situation is very public and will shine the light on this community and ruffle some feathers. They say what’s done in the dark will come to the light. Yall gone find out a lot about this little town from this incident.

  2. I do not believe race had anything to do with it! It’s about overzealous kids going too far. They are fired. She has her money plus. Let it go!

    1. If she were white would you still be saying to let it go?

      Yeah, didn’t think so. 💁🏻‍♂️

  3. Starters: the fired employees can try to file for unemployment but as there’s cause … and one that can lead to charges, it’ll likely be rejected.

    Second, the workers couldn’t prove or disprove their claims.

    Third, while I understand the woman wanted to do the right thing, in this economy, one should turn it in to police if they want to be ethical here and file a claim if not claimed after x days.

    Finally, how these employees handled it was quite possibly illegal (this is excluding the restraint). I feel for the owner because it is going to cost far more than $50.

  4. She found the $50 bill. That’s it. It was her lucky day and the store employees ruined it.

    It takes three young people to hold back a65 year old women from leaving the store? You choke her? What the hell is wrong with these people? How about a go fund me page for Mrs. Smith? So she can have her 50 dollars.

    this is wrong and upsetting

    1. The 3 young employees acted like a bunch of wolves on a carcass. They all jumped on a 65 year old defenseless Lady, set on grabbing the money from her hands that she found. What they did to her was violent & unprovoked! Her Daughter & Granddaughter were there to help & rescue their Mother & Grandmother. I agree, just firing the 3 employees is not just, they should’ve been arrested & thrown in jail until justice is done! Bless the 65 year old Lady, I pray she gets compensated enough to set her financially for life!

  5. I am so sorry for Ms. Smith and her family. This never should have happened and I still am in shock as to the lengths that these employees went to as far as locking her in and subduing her over this. And even worse what was said to her in those moments as well.
    Parents, please stop teaching your children hate and racism. No, it is NOT something that they pick up just randomly. If you condone it, they will condone it, and the cycle repeats itself. I am doing my damndest to UNDO what my children have learned from others. That includes extended family and those in the community they are exposed to daily. And I shouldn’t have to do this! Do you listen to the hate and filth flowing from your mouths? What if someone stereotyped and hated you just because of your name or the color of your skin? If a racist remark is heard in my house, it is NOT tolerated by me and doesn’t come without a stern lecture about how what they said is beyond wrong.
    Ms. Betty is the sweetest lady. She would never hurt anyone intentionally and never has. The actions these store employees took towards her just go to remind me that racism and intolerance still pollutes this small town I grew up in.

  6. Consideration of charges? Sounds to me like the wrong parties were arrested for defending a senior citizen as the employees of Lindeman’s committed several felonies including false imprisonment, unlawful restraint and injury to the elderly. Big Deal! They got fired. They’ll probably just file for unemployment. If you ask me they got off easy if they were only shoved by the woman’s family. Looks like that $50 bill might turn into Ms Smith’s winning $50 million lottery ticket. At the very least I won’t be giving the store any more of my business due to their employees’ actions.

    1. This world is becoming more and more crazy. I understand everyone want a hand on that money but, they could have arrived at an understanding.

    2. What happened to Mrs. Smith is shameful and it sounds like a matter that law enforcement is handling, however the store ownership appeared to do the right thing by immediately firing all three employees. I doubt the store ownership could ever imagine a group of employees doing something like this. I do not know the owners and really have only been in the store once or twice over the years, but to withhold your business from the store when they did the right thing seems unfair.

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