Walmart has fired a 31-year-old employee in Colorado for doing what he said was just part of his job.
The former employee -who asked only to be known as “Ramon”- claimed he was working as an asset protection associate for the chain when he helped stop a burglar at the beginning of the month.
“All I was trying to do was do my job, the best I could,” Ramon said.
To be fair, Ramon was sucker punched by the suspect when he was confronted, with a solid hit landing square in his eye socket- any retaliation would have been legally justified by the State of Colorado.
In fact, surveillance footage shows Ramon tackling 21-year-old suspect Juan Izalbe to the ground, restraining him until police arrive.
“(Izalbe) flat out told me ‘I’m schizophrenic, I don’t know what I’m going to do,'” Ramon said, explaining why he bear hugged the suspect to the floor, “When someone says something likes that, you have to take those threats seriously.”
At the time of the theft, Izabel armed himself with a stolen hammer and screwdriver before making his way to a sporting goods register and attempting to pry it open.
When Ramon was notified of the situation, he simultaneously called the police and made his way to the register, where he was assaulted and forced to subdue the suspect in self-defence.
After he was arrested, Izalbe told police “He didn’t mean to hurt anyone. He has schizophrenia.”
“I’ll take the charge for assaulting him, I know I shouldn’t have done that,” Izalbe told police.
Ramon needed stitches for his left eye and was off for three days. Upon his return, he was fired by the company.
“That hurt more than getting punched in the face. It’s like getting punched in the face twice,” said Ramon.
“They flat out told me I could have avoided the situation,” Ramon told KDVR.
“Ramon could have prevented the incident if he had not approached the suspect with an aggressive manner, tone and identified himself properly,” according to the termination letter.
This isn’t the first time Walmart has fired an asset protection associate for a bizarre reason. Earlier this year, a police officer who worked part-time at a Walmart location was fired for coming into the store armed- while in uniform.
If you’d like to help Ramon, a GoFundMe page has been launched to raise funds for legal action against Walmart. You can visit it HERE.
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