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Scranton Personal Injury Lawyer > Blog > Personal Injury > Can You Sue After Being Assaulted By A Shoplifter In Pennsylvania?

Can You Sue After Being Assaulted By A Shoplifter In Pennsylvania?


You’re minding your own business at your favorite clothing store when you see a fellow shopper sneak a garment into their bag without paying. Your mouth hangs open in disbelief, and you feel frozen with shock at the crime you’ve just witnessed. Finally, you gather up the courage to confront the shoplifter. But as soon as you mention that you’ve witnessed their crime, the shoplifter turns on you in a violent rage like a cornered animal, beating you to a pulp before sprinting out of the store with their stolen items. As you lie broken and maimed on the floor, you wonder why no one is helping you. But can this really lead to a lawsuit in Pennsylvania?

Pennsylvania Judge Allows Old Navy Customer to Sue After Violent Assault 

If you think the above story is unrealistic, just consider what an Old Navy customer recently experienced in Pennsylvania. In 2018, this 54-year-old victim confronted a 27-year-old woman when she witnessed her allegedly shoplifting clothing. Next, she informed a store employee of the issue, and she was told that the shoplifter would be dealt with. Satisfied with her actions, the 54-year-old proceeded to the checkout line with her items.

Suddenly, the alleged shoplifter appeared out of nowhere and spat in the woman’s face. The plaintiff was incited to violence, and she swung a fist towards the shoplifter after being spat upon. However, the shoplifter proved to be an elusive target, dipping and dodging the blows while returning with her own strikes. Eventually, the 54-year-old found herself flat on the ground, at which point she suffered kicks to the head from her attacker. The alleged shoplifter then fled the scene, covering her license plate with a scarf before zooming away in her vehicle.

Faced with serious injuries, the plaintiff explored options for compensation, eventually filing a lawsuit against Old Navy for filing to protect her from the attack. Although Old Navy sought to have this case dismissed, a judge ruled against the retailer – pointing out that a jury would need to decide the merits of this case.

It is unclear whether this lawsuit will actually lead to a settlement for the victim – especially since you could argue that she threw the first punch. However, this proves that at the very least, it is possible to sue for negligent security after being assaulted by a shoplifter you caught in the act.

Where Can I Find a Qualified Personal Injury Attorney in Pennsylvania? 

For help from a skilled Scranton personal injury lawyer, reach out to the Needle Law Firm. Over the years, we have helped numerous injured plaintiffs – including those who have suffered traumatic, life-changing injuries while visiting various stores in Pennsylvania. Whether you have suffered a slip and fall or an assault, you deserve to pursue meaningful compensation for the damages you have been forced to endure. Book your consultation today to get started with an effective action plan.




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