Falsely Accused of Stealing – $75,000 Settlement

A Black woman recovered $75,000 after being falsely accused of stealing from a grocery store and detained.  After being detained and wrongfully accused of stealing a few groceries while trying to leave the store, our client hired Whitney, LLP’s false shoplifting accusation attorneys.

Whitney, LLP filed a lawsuit alleging racial discrimination, invasion of privacy and false imprisonment, and claiming damages for the humiliation, embarrassment, upset, stress and anxiety our client was subjected to.  After suit was filed and depositions were taken that established our client had done nothing wrong and there was no evidence of her stealing, the case settled for $75,000.

If you were prevented from leaving a store or publicly accused of stealing, or believe you were accused of stealing due to racial discrimination, you have legal rights and may be able to recover significant compensation.

Whitney, LLP represents victims who are falsely accused of stealing across Maryland, including in Baltimore City, Bowie, Columbia, Randallstown, Towson, Woodlawn, Suitland, Oxon Hill, Gwynn Oak, Landover, Waldorf, Windsor Mill, Rockville and Fort Washington.

What Is Your Case Worth? Whitney, LLP offers Free Legal Evaluations. 

Our clients in false stealing accusation cases pay no out-of-pocket fees or expenses.

Call Whitney, LLP at 410 583 8000, or use our Quick Contact Form

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Falsely Accused of Stealing

Publicly being falsely accused of stealing is often traumatic for the victim.

In this case, our client tried to leave the store after deciding not to purchase anything.  However, the security guard blocked her way and insisted on searching her.  Our client explained she had not purchased anything and insisted she had not stolen anything.  She refused to be searched and exerted her legal rights.  However, the security guard was poorly trained, and insisted on trying to search and detain her despite having no evidence of her stealing anything.

When our client continued to refuse the illegal efforts to search her, a public scene occurred, with dozens of other customers seeing her being accused and prevented from leaving.  Our client was shocked,  embarrassed and humiliated.  She later testified she could feel the other customers’ eyes on her while she was stopped.

Invasion of Privacy

When a person is falsely accused of stealing in a public place, and other people witness the accusations, a claim of invasion of privacy can be brought.

Individuals have the right to be free from invasion of privacy, including false accusations.  When a person’s privacy and personal space is invaded, they have legal rights and may be able to recover compensation for damages, including emotional distress.

Whitney, LLP’s invasion of privacy lawyers have experience successfully bringing invasion of privacy claims when our clients are falsely accused of shoplifting, and in other situations.

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Detained and Prevented From Leaving Without Justification

Maryland law prevents store employees and security guards from stopping customers without a reasonable basis to do so.

“Shopping While Black” is not a legitimate reason to accuse a customer of stealing and prevent them from leaving.

Customers cannot be detained and prevented from leaving simply because a security guard or employee wants to stop them.  There needs to be evidence of a theft for a stop to be reasonable.

Without evidence of a theft having occurred, a customer’s legal rights are violated.  As the result of being prevented from leaving without justification, the customer may sue and bring claims for damages including emotional distress.

False Imprisonment

When a store customer is prevented from leaving without there being a legitimate basis for doing do, they have legal rights and can bring a claim of false imprisonment.

A claims of false imprisonment arises when a person is prevented from leaving an area by another person who does not have the legal right to prevent them from leaving.

Many businesses in Maryland trample on the rights of their customers, especially minority customers, when making false stealing accusations.  These businesses prevent their customers from leaving and detain their customers based on false pretenses or false accusations.

If you were subjected to false imprisonment, physically detained and prevented from leaving a store or business, you have legal rights and may be able to recover compensation.

Whitney, LLP’s Maryland false imprisonment lawyers have experience successfully bringing claims of false imprisonment for our clients who have been falsely accused of stealing.

Read about our results in other false imprisonment cases, including Whitney, LLP’s $100,000 recovery for our client who was a woman accused of stealing a $6 watermelon.

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Racial Discrimination Attorneys – When Falsely Accused of Stealing due to Race

In this case, our client suspected that she was stopped due to being Black, as she was among the only Black shoppers in the store.

Although the store denied that our client was stopped due to the color of her skin, there was no legitimate reason for her to be stopped or for the accusations to be made against her.

Being falsely accused of theft can be an incredibly traumatic experience, particularly when racial discrimination appears to be the reason.  Studies have shown that people of color are disproportionately targeted and treated unfairly in cases of suspected theft, often due to deeply ingrained stereotypes and prejudices.  When store employees and security guards are not properly trained, racial discrimination can play a significant role in false stealing accusations and wrongful detention.

Whitney, LLP’s racial discrimination attorneys have experience successfully recovering compensation in cases involving racial discrimination and false stealing accusations across Maryland.

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Falsely Accused of Stealing Compensation

Experiencing detention and false allegations of shoplifting is is a serious legal matter. Victims wrongfully detained and accused of theft have the right to seek compensation.

Whitney, LLP has experience recovering significant compensation for victims of false stealing accusations.

Compensation in cases of false shoplifting accusations can include:

  • Economic losses incurred
  • Emotional distress
  • Anxiety
  • Stress
  • Loss of privacy
  • Counseling expenses
  • Sleeplessness
  • Embarrassment
  • Humiliation
  • PTSD
  • Punitive damages

It is important for individuals who have suffered from false shoplifting accusations and racial discrimination to understand their rights including that they can pursue legal action to recover compensation.

daniel whitney jr daniel whitney sr  - Falsely Accused of Stealing - $75,000 Settlement

Daniel W. Whitney, Jr. and Daniel W. Whitney, Sr. of Whitney, LLP.

Falsely Accused of Stealing Attorneys – Whitney, LLP

Whitney, LLP has successfully represented multiple victims of false accusations and recovered significant compensation in claims against Maryland store owners, mall owners and their security guards.

Whether you are in need of a racial discrimination attorney, an attorney after being falsely accused of stealing, or an invasion of privacy or false imprisonment lawyer, Whitney, LLP has experience in all of these areas and may be able to help.

If you or a loved one did nothing wrong, but was falsely accused of stealing, detained or prevented from leaving a store, mall or other area, Call Us.

There are often many more legal rights and ways to recover compensation available than most people are aware of.

We offer Free Case Evaluations.

Call Whitney, LLP at 410 583 8000, or use our Quick Contact Form, to discuss your potential false shoplifting accusation case.

Watch our YouTube Channel for our videos on wrongful shoplifting accusation cases, false imprisonment and racial profiling, and how to fight back.

Of course, all cases are different, and past results do not guarantee future performance.


“When others did not want to take my case Whitney, LLP was willing. Dan was very very patient with me and his communication was always on point no matter how he reached out. He helped me and my family start our lives all over, I thank him so much.”

– Client

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“I would definitely recommend this firm. I contacted them just to get some insight and I was informed that I indeed had a case, and they won! Any questions or concerns I had were answered and explained clearly. They were very kind and informative throughout the whole process. I am very grateful that I stumbled across their page, it has changed my life. Thank you.”

– Client

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An attorney-client relationship is created only once a representation agreement is signed. Prior results are not a guarantee of future results, and all cases are different. This website does not provide legal advice.


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