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Walmart attack: Female victim criticizes security response

A woman attacked in a Walmart store by a would-be thief is questioning Walmart's security policies.
March 20, 2014 1:40:42 PM PDT
A woman attacked in a Walmart store by a would-be thief trying to make off with her gold necklace is questioning Walmart's security policies.

The suspect tried to rip a necklace from Linda Andrade's neck as she was shopping on Thursday, March 13. Andrade, 68, says she wasn't about to let go of the gold necklace her husband had given to her more than three decades ago.

"I just started yelling for help," said Andrade.

But no one came to her aid, so Andrade followed the suspect as he calmly exited the Walmart into a waiting car. The attack left her neck badly bruised.

She says an undercover security officer met her at the front to let her know the suspect had gotten away. When she asked the store's manager to call police, she says the manager persuaded her not to since she still had her necklace.

"'If I do that,' she said, 'You're going to be here two or three hours,' and she told me that a couple of times," said Andrade

Andrade says she went home and contacted police, who responded within 15 minutes.

The officer said because it was an assault, Walmart should have contacted them immediately.

In a statement to Eyewitness News, Walmart said: "We have reached out to Ms. Andrade to apologize for how this was handled. We have also reiterated our policies and procedures to those involved. We will work with local law enforcement to provide any information we have such as surveillance video to help identify the suspect responsible."

Andrade says she no longer feels safe shopping at the retailer and won't return.

If you have information related to the case, contact San Bernardino Police at (909) 384-5742.