An elderly couple riding scooters in a Texas Walmart ended up losing each other, so the wife rode outside the doors with items in her basket, prompting an employee to detain her and call police, accusing her of shoplifting.
Guadalupe Martinez, who is in her 70s, said she was not shoplifting, but looking for her husband, Juan Martinez, who is also in his 70s.
But they brought her into a back room anyway and began telling her she was permanently banned from Walmart.
When Buda police officer Demerriel Young arrived on the scene, he stepped into the room, and was followed by Juan Martinez, who stepped off his scooter to remain with his wife.
Body cam footage released this week shows Young ordering him out of the room, but Juan Martinez insisted he wanted to remain in the room with his wife.
That was when Young tried to shove him out the door, causing the elderly man to fall on the floor, yelling out in pain.
Juan Martinez remained laying on the floor for five minutes with several broken ribs until paramedics arrived, according to a federal lawsuit filed Monday.
The incident took place October 3, 2014 in the city of less than 10,000, just south of Austin, but charges against the couple, including shoplifting charges against Guadalupe; and interference charges against Juan; are still pending.
“We take this matter seriously. We haven’t been served with the complaint yet. Once we have the opportunity to review the allegations, we’ll respond appropriately with the court.”
PINAC Research Investigator Felipe Hemming contributed to this report.