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McCann v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
210 F.3d 51 (2000)

McCann v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.


Debra McCann (plaintiff) and her two sons were shopping at a Wal-Mart (defendant) store. After the McCanns paid at the register, two Wal-Mart employees blocked them from leaving the store. The employees asserted that McCann’s sons had previously been caught stealing and were not allowed in the store. However, the employees were mistaken and were confusing the McCanns with another family. The Wal-Mart employees escorted the McCanns to an area near the exit, and one employee left, claiming to be calling the police. McCann offered to show her identification, but the remaining employee refused to look at it. When one of McCann’s sons asked to go the bathroom, the employee told the boy that he could not leave. After an hour, the Wal-Mart employees realized their mistake and let the McCanns leave the store. McCann brought a claim of false imprisonment against Wal-Mart, and the jury ruled in favor of McCann.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Boudin, J.)

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