Posted by: henna | 2009/09/19

POST 3644 - New shoplifting trouble

Hi Doc,

I have written to you previously wrt my father dying of cancer and my difficult stepmother. My father is still alive, only barely so.

On thursday my 13mnth old baby and I went to a mall. She was inside a trolley and we boutght many things from different stores. The trolley was full of bags, nappies and tins of baby formula.

We then went to a clothing store where I took a dress to purchase and then a bottle of skin moisturiser and a small bottle of perfume. I placed the dress over the railinf of the trolley and the other 2 small items on top of a bag from another store. I didn' t want my baby to play with the items and perhaps break it.

Due to all the stress I am under (my husband is also overseas and I have to look after the 2 kids alone), and I haven' t had any sleep for days due to my father' s cancer and my daughter teething and crying all the time - when I went to the cashiers, I paid for the dress -on my account, but forgot about the other two items (I NEVER buy things like that for myself), I went outside the store and after a few metres, I remembered about the unpurchased items - then I proceeded back to the store to pay for the items but the security guard apprehended me and took me inside the store - I showed him the items and said I was coming back to pay for it. He refused to listen to me, the manager of the store was somewhat understanding but said his hands were tied because of the security guard. The security guard screamed at me that I' m a white thief and that he was going to grind me.

I was arrested, placed in jail for 4 hours where other detainees (men) screamed obscenities at me for hours. I was released and went to court the next day. The female black prosecutor told my (black) lawyer that because I am white she was going to nail me!!!!!!!!!! An african man' s case before me was withdrawn by the prosecutor, he was found with a stolen gun!!!!!!!! My case was postponed until 2nd october. My lawyer went to view the footage and he said that it didn' t look good for me from their point of view. Now we are appealling to the senior prosecutor so that he can overrule the junior prosecutor.

We are also going to the store to try for an out of court settlement - I don' t want a criminal record and because I am white the prosecutor is out to get me, we are applying for our immigration visas - won' t be granted if I have a record.

How do I deal with this? Some black people are so eager to scream " racism" , but since thursday there was discriminated against me (for an honest mistake) because I am white???? I am not a racist and had nothing to do with the apartheid era - why an I being punished for a crime I didn' t intentionally commit???

I don' t know how to deal with all this and my dying father...

Please advise me...

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

It does indeed sound very like racism. And if the security guard did NOT stop you on the way out, and you were actually going BACK INTO the store to pay for the forgotten items, it seems hard to insist that this must have been theft --- how many thieves carry their loot BACk into the store ? Maybe your lawyer should consider whether a psychiaric report about the stresses you are under and your state of mind, should be offered to the prosecutory and the court. And if it comes to trial, the security guard for sure, and the junior prosecutor should be caefully cross-examined about their attitudes towards whites and their comments made to you.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Tanya | 2009/09/20

If these people had any common sense they would ask why on earth are you coming back to pay for items that you supposably stole. No one does that- especially if you WANTED to steal them! If I were you I' d go to the Scorpians or somewhere and your lawyer (and the prosecuter) should get you physcologically evaluted to prove that you are under an immense amount of stress and that you simply forgot to pay but once you realized your mistake, you wanted to rectify it.

Reply to Tanya

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