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    • Hi,  
      I was in Sainsbury’s today and did scan and shop.
      I arrived in after a busy day at work and immediately got distracted by the clothes.
      I put a few things in my trolley and then did a shop.
      I paid and was about to get into my car when the security guard stopped me and asked me to come back in.
      I did and they took me upstairs.
      I was mortified and said I forgot to scan the clothes and a conditioner, 5 items.
      I know its unacceptable but I was distracted and Initially hadn’t really planned to use scan and shop.
      No excuse.
      I offered to pay for the goods but the manager said it was too late.
      He looked at the CCTV and because I didn’t try to scan the items he was phoning the police.
      The cost of the items was about £40.
      I was crying at this point and told them I was a nurse, just coming from work and I could get struck off.
      They rang the police anyway and they came and issued me with a community resolution notice, which goes off my record in a year.
      I feel terrible. I have to declare this to my employer and NMC.
      They kept me in a room on my own with 4 staff and have banned me from all stores.
      The police said if I didn’t do the community order I would go to court and they would refer me to the PPS.
      I’m so stressed,
      can u appeal this or should I just accept it?
      Thanks for reading 
      • 16 replies

Advice needed regarding incident at Boots.

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Hi everyone,


I am after some advice and any help anyone could offer would be greatly appreciated,

I apologise in advance for the length of this post

however I thought it was important to include every detail.


Yesterday morning (23/8/2010) my mother was in the Boots store in Belfast city centre

on her way home from her night shift as a nurse.



She had a couple of No7 promo vouchers (receive £5 off No7 products) and was looking at the self tan products.

There was a couple of different ones she was looking at

and as there were no testers available she did what I am sure a lot of us have done

and took them out of their box to have a closer look-



I personally feel with such products it really is necessary to be able to test before buying

as self tan can either smell really bad, be an awful colour etc etc.



She then realised that she needed to make a decision quickly or she would miss her bus

and then quickly put them back in the boxes, put them neatly back on the shelf and made her way to the checkouts.



At the checkouts she remembered she needed deodorant as well so quickly dashed to get it,

she paid for her items and then realised there was no way she was making the bus

that she had originally planned on getting so she decided that as she now had a bit of spare time before the next bus

she would continue to browse

- she had other vouchers so she purchased some more No7 products for my father.



After spending a further 15mins in the store she went to leave and was stopped by the security guard

who told her she must accompany him, she had absolutley no idea what was wrong so of course she did what he asked.



It turned out that when she was putting the bottles back into the boxes,

she had accidently put the wrong bottle in the wrong box

she was shocked at this and apologised she didnt think it was a serious offence but more of an embarrasing mistake

and she felt a bit silly

- her reaction was to apologise and immediatley try to pay the £1.60 price difference

or to just swap the bottles over so that the right ones were in the right boxes

(she had actually intended to purchase the cheaper product not the more expensive one that she had mistakingly put in the box).


The security guard was extremely aggressive and rude treating her and contacted the police.

The police then arrived and asked if she had a criminal record she told them the truth- that she does not.



The police then did a check and after doing so asked her once more for her DOB/Name etc..

when she once again provided these details the officers response was

"I dont think thats correct now is it?"



the police check had returned some one with the same name as my mother

born on the same year and from Northern Ireland who had convictions for burglary etc.



My mother protested that this person is not her but both the police officer

and security guard would not even entertain the idea that she was telling the truth,



she tried to tell them where she was born, where she was living and working etc

at the time that they were trying to say she was being convicted of these crimes

but they would not believe her.



As she did not have any photographic ID on her she said she would ring my Dad

so that the officer could confirm her details with him



-the security man attempted to stop her using her phone for some time

until the officer finally allowed her to, my dad confirmed her correct details

however the police officer did not even believe him.



She was told she had 2 choices- deny her "Crime" go to court and be prosecuted

or sign an exlusion order banning her from Boots for life and from most of the stores in Belfast and elsewhere for 1 year.

She signed the order as if she had been prosecuted she would have lost her job as a nurse etc.



She is going to the police station asap to get proof that she does not have a criminal record

however she is so upset over this and cannot believe she cannot go into most of the stores in Belfast for 1 year.



She has been told she will receive a fine and to expect a letter detailing the amount

- from researching online I am really scared that this will be a lot.


I feel this is a complete disgrace my mother has been a loyal customer of Boots for years.

I understand that they have to deal with shoplifters etc on a regular basis

but surely they need to have the ability to distinguish between intentional theft and a genuine mistake-



My mother made a mistake

- she paid for all her items she simply paid for the wrong item,

she said herself that when she would have realised when she returned home

she would have went back and explained and changed it for the other one.



Her actions were hardly those of a shoplifter however she was treated like absolute dirt,

I simply do not believe that such a minor incident warranted involving the police and banning her for life etc.



After reading other peoples accounts of similar incidents regarding Boots/RLP etc



I feel that something needs to be done about this!

Stores such as Boots maintain this golden image of a being one of the "good" guys

- this could not be further from the truth.


As I mentioned before

- apologies for the length of this post but any help would be great

- feel free to ask any more details that will help any more.

Thank You

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Hello and Welcome, If1907.


I'll move this thread to the appropriate Forum, where hopefully you'll get some help.






Any advice I give is honest and in good faith.:)

If in doubt, you should seek the opinion of a Qualified Professional.

If you can, please donate to this site.

Help keep it up and active, helping people like you.

If you no longer require help, please do what you can to help others

RIP: Rooster-UK - MARTIN3030 - cerberusalert

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Hi Scott,


Thank You- Its my first time ever using a forum so its all a bit confusing, really appreciate the help



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I can understand how the error occured and when your mum found out, she was more then willing to pay. The significant part is that she paid for other items. These

security people have to justify their existence and their total lack of training, if anything they should be charged with wasting police time. Others will be able to advise,

and hopefully you can gain access to the CCTV tape to back up your mums case.


Here are some guidelines:-



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Thank You- That is what is so annoying

- to me it must have been obvious that her actions were not those of a genuine theif

- she paid for all her items, continued to browse the store etc



I may be being naive here but I imagine that if someone had intentionally switched the bottles

then they would not have hung around the store after getting away with it.


I am planning on writing a letter to Boots as this ban is really upsetting he

r- not so much the ban from Boots (why would anyone want to shop there again after something like this)

but the fact that she was told that she cannot shop in a lot of the stores in Belfast that operate in this manner

- she doesnt know exactly which stores these are and is petrified to go shopping again

- the security man even informed her that she cannot even go to Tescos again!



She is so shaken up by this ordeal- being in a room with just an extremely aggressive security man

and policeman shouting at her and not believing a single word she was saying.


If anyone could offer some advice regarding who we should be contacting

/ if there is any way this ban could be lifted etc. it would be greatly appreciated.



I have been reading the information on here and I am truely disgusted

- I had no idea people could be treated in such a way over such minor incidents!



Companies clearly have to protect themselves against genuine crime

but surely common sense must be employed also and people who make genuine mistakes

must not be tarred with the same brush as those who intentionally steal..

Many thanks


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The consequences of visiting a store when banned is limited to damages for tresspass representing their actual loss, as long as the visit is otherwise lawful.


Personally I would ignore any alleged ban unless each store in question had notified me of it themselves. It is pretty questionable whether Boots have the power to impose a ban on other stores' behalf.

Post by me are intended as a discussion of the issues involved, as these are of general interest to me and others on the forum. Although it is hoped such discussion will be of use to readers, before exposing yourself to risk of loss you should not rely on any principles discussed without confirming the situation with a qualified person.

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See they made her sign an exclusion order, but I'm having a hard time trying to find out much about this..anyone know more about it what this means legally etc??

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Welcome to The Consumer Action Group.



I am just letting you know that as you haven't had any replies to your post yet, it might be better if you post your message again in an appropriate sub-forum. You will get lots of help there.


Also take some time to read around the forum and get used to the layout. It is a big forum and takes a lot of getting used to.



Once you start to find your way, you will soon realise that it is fairly easy to get round and to get the help you need.


It can be bit confusing at first.

Please be advised that my time will be limited for the next few weeks.Thanks for your understanding.

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