Woman suing Target after her son commits suicide

Mother Sues Target Over Son's Suicide
Mother Sues Target Over Son's Suicide

A Pasadena woman has filed a lawsuit against Target claiming her son took his own life after being humiliated by store managers who subjected him to a "walk of shame," PIX11 reports.

Virginia Gentles claims her 22-year-old son Graham was driven to suicide after he was accused of stealing and forced to take part in a so-called 'walk of shame' on June 15th.

In a lawsuit against the retail giant, Virginia claims that police and Target security arrested Graham as he arrived for work. Then, he was "paraded" through the store in handcuffs, past co-workers and employees.

"His life had been destroyed at that moment," Gentles says. "He just couldn't process what had happened. Everything ended for him, right at that moment." Virginia also says her son never took anything, and was never actually charged with a crime.

"The intention of the policy is to humiliate and shame, and in this particular instance the policy had its intended effect with tragic results," attorney Patrick McNicholas said.

Graham's mother says he has Asperger's Syndrome and experienced severe emotional distress following the incident. She explains that Graham lost not only his job after the humiliating moment, but all the co-workers who he considered good friends.

Three days later, Graham took his own life. He jumped from the roof of a local hotel.

Since Graham's story surfaced, another family -- who has a son with the same condition -- says that their son was subjected to the same 'walk of shame.'

Target released a statement on Friday, saying, "Our thoughts and sympathies go out to the friends and family of this individual. As this is pending litigation, we don't have further comment at this time."

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