November 26th, 2010
07:21 PM ET

Thefts, stampedes make Black Friday blue for some

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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. kdon

    good for t-mobile. i am glad they towed those cars.

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

    All over the place, from the popular culture to the propaganda system, there is constant pressure to make people feel that they are helpless, that the only role they can have is to ratify decisions and to consume." —Noam Chomsky

    November 26, 2010 at 8:27 pm | Report abuse |
  3. WhoZat

    I did my own Black Friday shopping. Went in to a big box hardware store around 2pm, got the one thing I needed, went back home. No muss, no fuss, no idiotic frenzied crowds.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:27 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Mr Phil

    Camping since Wednesday? You people DISGUST ME!!! The worthless crap made in China that you want to pass out to family will still be there before Christmas. Or how about this for an idea, instead of placing so much value on CONSUMING, you spend the holidays with your friends and family? Christian nation? Yeah right. Our only god is the god of stuff.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jake

      Let's face it. Most family and friends are boring and obnoxious. That's why we buy them stuff for Christmas. Keeps them occupied so you don't have to talk to them.

      November 26, 2010 at 8:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimbob

      Not exciting like you huh Jake?

      November 26, 2010 at 8:35 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Artie

    Republicans no doubt. They're always trying to cheat somehow. I mean look at their leader Tom Delay.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimbob

      Artie, now that was uncalled for.

      November 26, 2010 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jimbob

    after watching the video i was moved, those two ladies worked so hard saving that welfare money and waiting all night just to have some other welfare people steal their stuff. it sounds like a hate crime.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Creel

    I don't care if there given stuff away, I wouldn't go shopping on Black Friday. It's beyond stupid.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:30 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Dave

    Kinda chokes you up, doesnt it? Makes you want to salute and say " I am proud to be an American" Large corporations are now the new Aristocracy and the peasant class kills themselves to enrich their landlords.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Atheism

    MERRY CHRISTMAS! ROFL... awesome. Consumerism and Self-centeredness are never worse than around religious holidays.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • James

      Thanksgiving isn't a religeous holiday moron.

      November 26, 2010 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      James, do you think they were shopping for turkeys? Is Christmas considered a religious holiday in your book? Who is the real moron?

      November 26, 2010 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Monique

      Wow, Atheism, you've now convinced me because of the consumerism, there is no God, thank you so much enlightened one for your brilliant post, you've now converted us all

      November 26, 2010 at 8:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • robert

      This is not about religion holiday,this is about people in the last 10 years thinking they have more rights than the person next to them and just being good ol human self centered. It;s not religion that makes people and cops alike do illegal u turns or speed (just more self centerness that leads to other selfishness like the black friday bull crap. its all about manners and being ameican and not acting like a bin laden(someone who thinks they can cut in line and steal.

      November 26, 2010 at 8:57 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Jimbob

    Charlie Wrangle was out there

    November 26, 2010 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
  11. CheleViajero

    It's sad that the Bearded Lady had to have her s*it stolen, but the fact thats shes black makes it that much worse. I wish it could have been a couple yuppie white chicks. This coming from a white dude.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • hellae


      November 26, 2010 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marie

      Nobody deserves to get their stuff stolen. It sucks no matter who you are.

      November 27, 2010 at 1:40 pm | Report abuse |
  12. nodebt168

    People think these deals are sooo great. All these "special prices" tell me is that the stores are screwing us the other 364 days of the year. Stop and think about it....they offer great deals and still post big profit margins at the same time.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:33 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Jimbob

    My nephew talked me into going one year. We waited in line 6 hours and got nothing. I felt like a lowlife idiot. Never again.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • robert

      The only time i ever did shop on this day, was because i had to drop my wife off at work at 10am, it was all over by then, a place to park, pavement to walk on, no pushing, so i went in to circuit city next door and bought the last of the only thing that was a good price, a tv show on dvd for 12 dollars, regular 37 dollars. i would never have went out at 6am for it, or just to get in these crowds, just took a chance since it seemed over and had to drop the mrs. off at work, otherwise, like today, i was home with my kid and not thinking a thing about black friday, other than i like to see who else got trampled by a bunch of low life, slef center, idiots.

      November 26, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
  14. JDG

    "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.

    Sounds like he couldn't afford the PS3 in the first place. Loser. Moron. Hope he's reading this.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:34 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Krehator

    These people represent the worst element in America. Selfish, materialistic, and out of touch with the real meaning of the Holidays. Of course the businesses feed it.

    People need to be held accountable for the horrible things that happen during these greedy displays.

    November 26, 2010 at 8:34 pm | Report abuse |
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