In very troubling news, a 70-year-old veteran was recently fired for trying to thwart a robbery of stolen goods from the Home Depot he was working at.
The robbery that had led to Jim Tinney's firing took place a few weeks ago when he was alerted to three men nervously carrying tool sets to the checkout lines.
"One of them hollered, 'Let's go!' and they all grabbed their kits and started heading out," Tinney recalled, according to Fox News, adding that he tossed over the paint roller extension he was holding to try and stop one of the thieves.
The men ended up escaping with thousands of dollars' worth of merchandise.
Tinney admitted that Home Depot's store policy prohibits employees from confront shoplifters, but he claimed it was just a reflex that happened "automatically" in response to the theft.
Two weeks after the incident, Tinney was blindsided by a notice that he was being fired for his actions against the robbers. Tinney is now unemployed and having a tough time getting a new job.
"I'm 70 years old. I need to work. I needed that job," he said. "I enjoyed working with customers helping figuring out what they wanted to do. It's fun."
Tinney claims he was only trying to do the right thing in confronting the thieves.
"In the Army, they train you to do things like that," he explained.
Unfortunately, his heroic actions are being condemned by his former employer in what Tinney believes is a very harsh reaction to his response.
"I think they could have written me up, reprimanded me, but terminate me? That's pretty strong," Tinney said about the situation.
Home Depot's spokesman for the matter said in a statement, "We have a strict policy that only our trained security personnel can pursue can pursue and engage shoplifters. We've had deaths and serious injury over the years, and no amount of merchandise is more important than the safety of our associates and customers.
For now, it seems that heroism pays a price in the case of Mr. Tinney. Hopefully, the former veteran can find some more work after his termination or, although very unlikely, the folks at Home Depot can figure out a better way to reprimand him without leaving him unemployed for trying to do the right thing.
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