November 26th, 2010
07:21 PM ET

Thefts, stampedes make Black Friday blue for some

[cnn-video url="http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/us/2010/11/26/fl.black.friday.shoppers.robbed.wpbf"%5D

Call it a case of consumerism bringing out the worst in people.

Three women in West Palm Beach, Florida, say $1,000 worth of Best Buy merchandise was stolen from their car Friday morning within minutes of being purchased, according to CNN affiliate WPBF.

The women were the first people at Best Buy after camping out since Wednesday night.

After they made their purchases, they put them in the car and went to JC Penney. A few minutes later, they returned, and the goods were gone.

"I mean, we've been camping since Wednesday," a tearful Shereece Francis told WPBF. "Just cruel, just wicked."

The women weren't the only ones to experience Black Friday car troubles.

At least 10 shoppers in St. Louis, Missouri, left Best Buy to find that their cars had been towed, CNN affiliate KSDK reports.

The customers had parked in a lot adjacent to Best Buy belonging to a T-Mobile store. They told KSDK there were no signs saying parking was for T-Mobile customers only, just a small, upside down sign from "Bulldog Towing" warning about abandoned or illegally parked cars.

Now, those customers are out $335.

"We're going to have to return our gifts that we bought on Black Friday just to get the car from tow," said Lavorn Ford, who had purchased a Playstation 3 for his son. "It's frustrating because you get up early in the morning to get your kids stuff for Christmas and then this stuff happens. "

A T-Mobile store manager said the store needed the parking lot when it opened at 7 a.m.

"Our lot was full by 4 and then again by 6, so we would have opened up our business and not had any spots," store manager Brian Fisher said.

It seems that some people will go to extreme lengths in the name of their children. A Wisconsin woman who cut in front of a long line of Black Friday shoppers was arrested, police say, after she allegedly threatened to shoot those she moved ahead of.

"I just wanted to get my daughter the toy that she wanted for Christmas, which probably won't be there when I go today," Lanessa L. Lattimore, 21, told CNN.

Lattimore attempted to cut in front of a line of "several hundred shoppers" at a Toys R Us store in Madison, Wisconsin, on Thursday, according to a police report. Lattimore admitted there had been a confrontation in the line but disputed the details.

"Everybody was cutting in line. But there was one girl who was threatening me, so I told her that I'd shoot her," Lattimore told CNN. "I'm not a violent person, but police charged me with disorderly conduct."

Several eager shoppers were trampled Friday morning as they surged through Target store doors in North Buffalo, New York.

CNN affiliate WIVB had a camera inside the Target and captured the drama. People at the front of the line were pushed to the floor when doors opened. The commotion and screams drew additional store staff to sort the crowd out. 

"It went from controlled to a mob in less than five minutes," shopper Rich Mathewson told WIVB. "And then it just got nasty."

Several people had cut into the line, angering the crowd, Mathewson said.

Unruly Wal-Mart shoppers in Sacramento, California, prompted an evacuation of the store, affiliate KTXL reported.

Just after the store opened its doors at 5 a.m., customers became pushy and unruly.

Sacramento Sheriff's officers were called in to help clear the store and everyone was ordered to leave their carts in the store and exit. Once everyone outside calmed down, shoppers were allowed back in to finish their shopping, according to KTXL.

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Filed under: Crime • Holidays
soundoff (1,197 Responses)
  1. Leonard

    \What do you expect from people who wake up at 3am ...they are not the most friendly people you want to meet at that time of morning....and those women who had their car broken into while shopping at JC Penny's...they were targeted from the beginning....You come out from Best Buy and go somewhere else to shop...the wolves are right behind you waiting for you to leave your purchases unattended....should of gone home first.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:53 pm | Report abuse |
  2. canonscottage

    The Sacramento Wallmart's response to unruly people was superb!!!!! Clear the store!!!

    November 26, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  3. puromierda

    Wake up people! See the trend??? If our society acts like this for one shopping day [Black Friday], imagine what we would do if our economy suddenly collapsed? A lady who skipped in line, threatening to kill people in a checkout line because she wanted to get her daughter her favorite "wanted" toy??? Makes you wonder what a person like this would do to if their was a sudden food shortage! What would she do for a can of beans? WOW!! Like seals at a circus we respond!

    November 26, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  4. jules

    Really, people? Is it REALLY worth it?
    Hell, no.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  5. AJS

    Look at the Americans. And they call themselves the civilized world.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jean

    If sales make you purchase stuff you weren't going to buy in the first place, then how are you saving money?

    November 26, 2010 at 8:55 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Dean

    hahahaa this story is just hilarious, they take off work or probably dont even goto work to camp out for stuff for their kids? good for them for havign it stolen, that would be considered stupid tax. Ithink the ones outside in those lineups for the black fridays should all be beaten.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:56 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Ahoymatey

    What a bunch of pathetic losers who turn into animals just to save a few bucks!

    November 26, 2010 at 8:58 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Me

    I feel bad their electronics were stolen and they waited in line so long.

    But, whoever puts expensive items in their car, in front of everyone else, and then leaves is just DUMB. Sorry, but I had to say it. I don't care if you are in the best neighborhood in the world, NEVER DO THAT. Put your stuff in the car and LEAVE the parking lot.

    Go park somewhere else to go into the other store. Plain and Simple.

    I worked in Manhattan for 10 years. Whenever I drove in, everything in the car went in the trunk BEFORE I left the house. NEVER moved into the trunk after parking, even if it was a jacket.

    EVERYONE I know who moved stuff in the trunk after parking, WOUND UP BEING ROBBED.

    STUPID STUPID STUPID

    November 26, 2010 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Name*David

    Advertising Black Friday every year, and expecting different results; stupid.

    November 26, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
  11. makgroom

    Another fun day at the zoo.

    November 26, 2010 at 9:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • jos

      Ya think the skinny red-clad hag from the Target commercials got trampled and squished in the middle of her orgasmic buying spree?

      November 26, 2010 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Christopher

    What morons.

    November 26, 2010 at 9:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • RDMC

      I agree...

      November 26, 2010 at 9:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sally

      What idiots! The day after Thanksgiving is the worst day ever to go shopping, and intelligent people know that. Waste of time, money & character................

      November 26, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • VegasRage

      Indeed, anyone who waits for the idiot frenzy on Black Friday needs to have their heads examined.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • johnnyever

      Sounds like someone needs to reread How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • a white guy

      Avoiding the dangers of this situation is quite easy in all actuality; simply shop on the 51 White Fridays.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:28 pm | Report abuse |
  13. lizs

    Black Friday shopping sounds horrendous. I would never shop on Black Friday. Who are these people?

    November 26, 2010 at 9:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • evoc

      They are regular people trying to survive on low-wage jobs, eager for a chance to get something they have wanted for a while.

      November 26, 2010 at 9:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • jos

      And yet... it's not worth it.

      November 26, 2010 at 9:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Patrick

      This is shameful, these people are insane. The stores foster this madness too. With only x amount of units all these people are rushing for a limited amount of garbage. How about this, hand out numbers and then allow only 200 shoppers with the numbers to enter, then for each number that leaves collect the numbers. After the crowd thins open the doors to everyone. The fire code only allows so many anyway. but, the store wants this madness thinking they will make more money. This crap needs to be regulated, since the mob mentality has taken over. Or better yet allow this crap online only so the mob can be controlled. These stores and reporters like CNN relish these stories now every year ask yourself why there are cameras there now to catch the newsworthy madness almost encouraging this insanity. What out there is worth this horrendous behavior? Nothing is but Americans are so ignorant now. Anyone who doesn't see this is the end times are fooling themselves, no lines for church, no lines to volunteer or help the elderly or celan up neighborhoods. But, long lines to buy crap when we are in a depression with people hungry, homeless, is this the meaning of Christmas?

      November 26, 2010 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • jos

      Caivan, this is not about color, so don't act like a bigoted jerk.

      November 26, 2010 at 9:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • tapu

      EVOC– you're in college, aren't you, boy?

      November 26, 2010 at 9:58 pm | Report abuse |
  14. srsk

    They call it Black Friday because the retail stores start to "get in the black" profit wise–

    November 26, 2010 at 9:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Abbyka

      It's funny though because the first black friday I worked we had a black out. I found it humorous but there were customers that did not. Some of them were trying to shove money at me even though I couldn't open the registers. I lost my humor when that started happening.

      November 26, 2010 at 9:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • jos

      Dear person called "ME," you're a jerk.

      November 26, 2010 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • manuel

      A little racist aren't we ME? By the way why are you timid to put down your real name? Is it because you are afraid of getting massacred by all those angry black people you work with? Or is it because all you care about is yourself? I think I'm gonna have to go with the latter.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Rafael G Soares

    The same happens here in Orlando-FL yearlong, burglars stalk tourists (specially Foreigners, that shop a lot) that shop at Best Buy, Prime and Premium Outlets, and they fallow these people to restaurants or other stores to break in their cars to steal thousands of dollars worth of electronics, accessories and clothing...
    After Katrina hit the Gulf a lot of people moved down here to Central Florida violence went crazy, Please OPD and OCSO do something!!!

    November 26, 2010 at 9:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • sugarmama

      Sweet! Blame it on (presumably black) people from Katrina. If you have proof that's who's committing crimes, don't post it on CNN.com, call the cops.

      November 26, 2010 at 9:39 pm | Report abuse |
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