33-Year-Old Mother Banned From Walmart For Life

Meet Anenide Cherry. Walmart banned her from entering their Palm Bay, FL store after she was caught using her three kids to steal merchandise worth over $300. Loss prevention officers observed Cherry’s tikes, ages 6, 12, and 15, bagging unscanned items at the self-checkout counter. From Local6:

Cherry paid $113 in goods but had a total of $400 worth of stolen merchandise sitting in her cart, police said. Cherry was stopped while a male companion accompanying her bolted out the door, according to reports.

Cherry was charged with retail grand theft and asked to sign an affidavit stating that she will never return to the Palm Bay Walmart. She will not be ordered to wear a sign saying: “I Stole From Walmart.”

Woman Banned For Life From Wal-Mart [Local6.com]

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  1. emax4 says:

    Amen! It’s about time that Wally World stepped up to the plate.

    Still… there’s nothing saying that she can’t ask a family member or friend to shop there for her, or have someone else do her old dirty work there.

  2. gamble says:

    Oh, if only everyone could be banned from Walmart…

  3. humphrmi says:

    Isn’t this somewhat of an incentive for us to try to steal from Wal-Mart?

  4. mopar_man says:

    @gamble:

    Agreed.

    Obviously she doesn’t read consumerist. The proper thing to do would’ve been to do multiple trips and steal under $25 worth of goods each time until she had what she needed.

  5. K-Bo says:

    In nc shoplifting using your child (hiding clothes under them in a stroller, or having the child participate ect.) is a felony. Seems to me she’s lucky to be banned for life, instead of being heading to jail.

  6. SOhp101 says:

    @K-Bo: Did you read the article? She was arrested after she signed the affidavit. What she should have done is dropped all the unpaid goods before leaving the store and ran… Shoplifting 101. I don’t advocate shoplifting but if you’re going to do it at all, do it right.

  7. TechnoDestructo says:

    @SOhp101:

    I’m not sure her 6 year old would have been able to keep up.


    Also…I’m sure those kids, the older ones in particular, are going to grow up to be just LOVELY people.

  8. krunk4ever says:

    I had always thought grand theft was stealing $1000+ (hence the grand). However according to Wikipedia:

    In the United States, the value necessary for a crime to rise from Petty to Grand theft can be as low as $100 depending on the jurisdiction, but is usually $200 or $1000.

  9. Cowboys_fan says:

    I’m afraid to blame the victim here as I don’t want to get banned.

  10. dbeahn says:

    @krunk4ever: “Grand” is a reference to magnitude of the offense, along the lines of “major” theft or “minor” theft.

    Apparently in FL $300 qualifies as a felony.

  11. Melov says:

    I call bs. The self scan checkouts won’t allow extra weight unless the cashier overrides it, which they NEVER do.

  12. peggyhill says:

    Does the local DCF get involved if these are minor children? I would certainly hope so.

  13. TechnoDestructo says:

    @Melov: It didn’t say what the items were. If they’re light enough, it won’t pick them up. Not sure what could be that valuable and not be noticed by the scale, though…flash cards?

  14. dbeahn says:

    @Melov: See, here’s the thing. If you have 3 kids BAGGING things from the cart and then putting them back INTO the cart, the self-checkout doesn’t have anything to weigh…

    Or perhaps the kids were walking the items down to the end of the self-checkout, where things just sit after they’ve been weighed and all that?

    With 2 adults and 3 kids, I don’t think it would be that hard to create enough movement to keep the other customers distracted from what you were really doing. Kid grabs item from bagging area. Runs to mom making a fuss. Mom hands kid another item or 2, sends kid back to bagging area where kid puts paid-for item and 1-2 not paid for items into a bag that they then put into a cart.

    Seriously, could you not figure out how this scam worked even after reading the article?

  15. rekoil says:

    Actually, banning a shoplifter from a store is pretty common procedure…just about every retail establishment has a “wall of shame” somewhere in an employee area with a gallery of eject-on-sight individuals. If she had been banned from *all* Wal-Mart stores this story would be more newsworthy. Next!

  16. ptkdude says:

    I have to say, Wal-Mart (and Kroger, Home Depot, and any other retailer that has self checkouts) should expect stuff to walk out the door like this. If you’re going to have me do your job for you (i.e. ring up my own purchases) without a discount, don’t be surprised when people steal stuff.

  17. XianZhuXuande says:

    @Melov: Sure they do. Maybe they profile? I imagine that’s the case.
    Then again, they can probably see just what sort of weight difference they are dealing with. It woman’s crimes were probably obvious to them. Just another typical store thief… glad she was caught.
    I have absolutely no sympathy for someone who would involve their kids.

  18. rdldr1 says:

    Hey lady, never bite the hand that feeds you. Have fun shopping at the Salvation Army, you waste of space.

  19. Don Roberto says:

    @gamble: No. Banning everyone from wal-fart would bring the riffraff into other stores.

  20. snowferret says:

    retail grand theft?
    I thought grand theft had to be theft over 5000$?
    Pretty embarrassing for her anyways…

  21. TechnoDestructo says:

    Also, 33 year old mother with a 15 year old kid. Why am I not surprised?

  22. WhatsMyNameAgain says:

    Haha! She wasn’t STEALING!!! Now that they have self check-out, it’s like she’s sort of an employee…. She was just using her fringe benefits!

    Nothing wrong with that…

  23. weave says:

    I was banned from Pathmark for life when I was 12. I was accused of stealing a box of Good-n-Plenty candy. I had purchased said box from the Hallmark store next door before going into Pathmark. I pleaded with the guy to just walk next door with me and I was sure the cashier would remember ringing me up.

    He refused and told me never to step foot into a Pathmark again for my entire life. I’m 48 now and still honor it.

  24. Consumer-X says:

    I still don’t get the whole anti Wal-Mart hatred thing. All they do is sell stuff cheaper. That is Capitalism. What better economic system do Wal-mart haters prefer? Is Socialism better? Obviously it was not better for the 100 million people who died under that system.

  25. Shadowfire says:

    I’m sad she didn’t have to wear the sign. :(

  26. Ncisfan says:

    Ah almost being baned for life fro Walmart. I remember it like the whole fuss was yesterday (although more like 2 1/2 yrs ago). my friend and I used to build model cars and so his sister drove us to Walmart to pick up some new model cars, glue, spray paint etc.. we make it to the self check out ring everything up then begin to walk towards the exit when some asshole employee named Jeff approaches us and pulls a bag out of my hands. And so that everyone knows that he, a dude who had to be at least 30, can overpower two 12 year olds. Screams “no, bad kid you cant have this!” and pulls out a bottle of Krazy Glue for everyone to see and i asked him what the problem was only to get “It’s illegal for kids to buy this” then he pulls out a bottle of paint and repeats the whole spiel and then says”Your gonna get banned for this” and I’m thinking : wow this guy needs to see a shrink . luckily his sister walked in and cleared up the mess. and filed a complaint I don’t know if they fired him or not but…. they’re lucky I cant afford to shop anywhere else!

  27. Karunamon says:

    @ptkdude:

    Sure. And tell that to the cops when they haul your ass off for shoplifting.

  28. MrFlashport says:

    Wal-Mart sucks…that being said, any parent who uses their kids to commit any crimes is a shitbag and should be put to death. You can write off the brats too, as they’ve already learned to be a criminal thug like mommie…people like this should not be allowed to breathe. What a useless piece of human garbage. She should be shot on the spot. at least she got caught (but no doubt after a few days in jail, a 100 dollar fine and an “I won’t do it again” letter, she’ll be down the road at Target with her three hoodrats ripping them off in the not so distant future).

  29. ogoldberg says:

    I’m a regular reader of consumerist, and usually I find the posts to be very informative, interesting, and useful. I often forward articles to friends. I look to consumerist to as a rare source of information that helps create a balance of power between the huge corporations you write about, and the small, powerless, consumer who is constantly being screwed over by these mega-corps. I look to consumerist as inspiration to fight myself when I am feeling exploited.

    This piece, however, has nothing to do with that proud history. Here, you have a huge picture of a woman’s face to identify her as an unqualified terrible person for stealing from thieves with her children (most likely so that they can have something to eat).

    I am not commenting in order to defend her actions, however, since I am surprised neither by them, nor the inordinately insensitive comments about how she is a “waste of space,” nor the small picture idiots who believe she is “biting the hand that feeds her”.

    What surprises me, is that I would find a one-sided blog post hanging a consumer out to dry, inviting a vicious comment flogging of a woman who effectively is accused of stealing something like $200, on such a generally fantastic blog!

    I mean, this is ridiculous. First of all, this kind of stuff happens every single day, what makes this story so incredibly interesting? and how is it relevant to me as a consumer?

    Secondly, and even more importantly, why is it that when you do a story about a huge company stealing millions, sometimes billions of dollars from poor, working class people, you always show both sides of the story, but when you cover a poor working class family stealing what is effectively peanuts from an enormous behemoth of a company that you highlight as criminal on a daily basis, that person gets a huge picture of their face posted online and is vilified as scum of the earth and not asked to explain their side of the story? Is it simply because they were banned for life from Walmart for stealing?

    If that is newsworthy for the consumerist, I have to wonder if I’m going to continue getting this RSS feed. You are providing a great service to Walmart by posting this story by assisting them as they continue to treat their employees, the communities they force themselves into, and their consumers as less than human.

    Thank you for helping Walmart publicly vilify this woman. They have very few resources to do such things themselves, and I’m sure she doesn’t have it bad enough. In fact, I’m sure she just loves the fact that she has been reduced to teaching her kids how to steal. It probably makes her feel all warm and fuzzy inside. And, yes, let’s write off the kids too, that is always the best way to ensure that they grow up to be valuable, contributing members of society.

    Some of the comments I’m seeing here make me embarrassed to be a regular reader of this blog. What happened to some basic human compassion and understanding? What happened to seeing the big picture??

  30. Buran says:

    I’d be shocked if they actually can enforce stuff like this, considering how bad they are at actually paying attention to needs. I’ve had someone working there actually be helpful once in all the times I’ve been there, and he was a cool geeky type, in the electronics department. Granted, I haven’t been there that many times because I prefer to shop at places with decent service/sources/goods, but occasionally no one else has what I need.

    Too bad I didn’t get the guy’s name to compliment him to his bosses.

  31. ahwannabe says:

    They can’t even keep Nazi t-shirts and poison dog food off the shelves; how are they going to keep one woman out?

  32. brw3245 says:

    In Florida theft of $300 or more or items that are valued $300 or more is grand theft. There are exceptions such as $200 being grand theft from a religious institution more than 2000 pieces of citrus fruit, a horse or any livestock animal etc.

    When I was in the police academy our law professor told us that if we ever steal 2000 oranges, eat one real quick because then it goes from a felony to a second degree misdemeanor.

    That is advice we can all live by.

  33. Jon Parker says:

    @weave: Ha! I had the same thing happen to me at a different (now defunct) store. What made it worse were two factors.

    1. They called my dad, and he backed the store manager. I never forgave that.

    2. They didn’t even sell the the product I had supposedly shoplifted. It was a Marvel Conan comic book, and all they sold were Archies and Gold Keys in a plastic bag of three.

    I was a snotty teenager, but I wasn’t a thief.

  34. Cowboys_fan says:

    @ogoldberg:
    Its always about money.
    I agree though, big deal.

  35. miborovsky says:

    @weave: Their loss.

  36. shades_of_blue says:

    @Ncisfan: You should have filed a report with the local police and spoke to an attorney. I bet you could have sued Walmart, they should be legally responsible for their employee’s actions. Assaulting a minor, could have turned into a nice settlement. Shame, really.

  37. jrdnjstn78 says:

    I work in retail but not at Wal-mart. It is a big deal when people shoplift. Why do you think stores raise prices, because they want too? They do it to recover the cost of people stealing and for other reasons. Consumer theft and employee theft are very big problems in retail.
    So saying that this woman may be down on her luck is a good enough reason for her to steal and use her children to steal for her? I struggle too but I would never go to any store and steal and use my kids to steal too. She got what she deserved and she should have more respect for her kids then teaching them to steal. I understand that she may be struggling to but that gives her no right to steal, if it did then we’d all go steal and bring our kids along.
    I feel sorry for her kids but not for her.

  38. Cowboys_fan says:

    “Is it wrong to steal a loaf of bread for a starving family?
    What if you have a rather large family, would it be wrong to steal a truckload of bread?
    What if your family does not like bread and they like say, cigarettes. And if instead of giving those cigarettes away, you sell them at a price that is practically giving them away. Would that be wrong?”

  39. ogoldberg says:

    @jrdnjstn78: My point isn’t to necessarily defend her act, I don’t have anywhere near enough information to do that (although, generally I see Walmart as the much grander thief, and her act as generally incomparable in the grand scheme), and I certainly don’t believe that those who would so easily call for her death by shotgun have enough information either.

    My point is that this story doesn’t seem to me to fit with the mission of this blog, and is in fact paying a great service to big corporations like Walmart that this blog generally tends to speak out against. Furthermore, my goal was to express a deep disappointment in the readership of this blog for the numerous thoughtless, hateful, and insensitive remarks based on very little information calling for execution of a mother of 3 for an act of theft and bad parenting. What country is this anyways?!

  40. Shadowfire says:

    @ogoldberg: It is never ok to steal. Never. There is always an alternative.

    Some of the posts have been hate-filled, true, but the fact is that she is a bad mother, and a thief, and deserves nothing less than jail time.

    Wether this belongs on Consumerist or not is up for debate, but that’s not your decision… until you are a contributor/owner, you can either read, or go somewhere else. To tell someone else what they should put on their website is damned arrogant.

  41. virgiliana says:

    I do think it is unconscionable to post this woman’s picture. What’s the point? Am I supposed to turn her in to the Walmart’s security force if I happen to notice her shopping there? I expect better from this blog.

  42. beyond says:

    Mom of the Year.

  43. floofy says:

    @ogoldberg:
    Thank you for a different point of view. I couldn’t have said it better myself. You’re exactly right.

  44. r81984 says:

    That woman deserves to be shot and killed, whats the point of her continued existence? She is a ghetto piece of crap.

  45. guroth says:

    “Also, 33 year old mother with a 15 year old kid. Why am I not surprised?”

    And also two more kids. Stereotypical leech of society.

  46. thedreamingtree says:

    Ogoldberg, I think you have a good point. Being caught stealing, while a serious crime, is still not reason to totally vilify the woman as a human being, and discard her children as trash. There seems to be an overtone of racism to some of the comments here, as well as a general hatred of children and the poor, which I have noticed in comments on other articles as well.

  47. ogoldberg says:

    @Shadowfire: If you believe it’s never ok to steal, than I assume you believe that the CEOs at Walmart should also be imprisoned for the outrageously low wages their emloyees receive? They are thieves of labor. Not to mention the crimes they commit against the communities that they invade.

    “Wether this belongs on Consumerist or not is up for debate, but that’s not your decision…”

    duh. I don’t recall actually having made any decisions on that. I simply instigated that very debate you are referring to. There is clearly a distinct difference between speaking and acting. You seem to be working that out, which is good, but you’ve got a little ways to go.

  48. ogoldberg says:

    @r81984: Is this board being monitored at all? What exactly is the standard you guys have for your supposed filter? This is hate speech, plain and simple.

    When people first become members they have to submit a comment for editorial approval in order to maintain a high standard for future comments. Is that the end of the process? Do you guys really want hateful, racist comments all over your blog?

  49. hop says:

    that’s quite a feat, gettin’ banned from wal-mart…………

  50. boandmichele says:

    i wish more people would ban themselves from walmart.

  51. acambras says:

    @guroth:

    “Also, 33 year old mother with a 15 year old kid. Why am I not surprised?”

    And also two more kids. Stereotypical leech of society

    So anyone with 3 or more children is some sort of societal parasite? Glad to hear it — I’ll be sure to call my mom and tell her.

  52. Yourhero88 says:

    @ogoldberg:

    Here, you have a huge picture of a woman’s face to identify her as an unqualified terrible person for stealing from thieves with her children (most likely so that they can have something to eat).

    I think your tinfoil hat is on crooked.

    This woman stole. While I agree that it is unfair to make racist and classist assumptions about why this woman stole, that is exactly what you are doing. For all you know her kids took $200 worth of DVD’s. Don’t turn her into the starving beggar stealing a loaf of bread to feed her children. That’s why this fine society has foodstamps and welfare (another rant I’d rather not get on right now…)

    I know we all hate Walmart here, but just because a business has some negative press, doesn’t mean stealing from them is justified.

  53. Steel_Pelican says:

    @ogoldberg:
    You call Wal-Mart thieves, but that’s a bit of a stretch. Wal-Mart (as a corporation) complies with United States minimum wage laws, so if you feel that their employees are paid too little, your issue is with the US minimum wage standard, not Wal-Mart. Like any business, they are loathe to pay more than the market rate for a given commodity, and that includes labor. The cost of labor is governed by supply and demand, just like everything else. Unskilled labor is in great supply, and is therefore cheap.

    I’ve lived on minimum wage, and it wasn’t easy. It’s my optimistic wish that no one has to live under those conditions. However, the key to earning more is not in expecting employers to be more generous- to pay you more than the market rate- but by increasing your value as a worker.

    To call Wal-Mart thieves just simply isn’t fair- they aren’t actually stealing from anyone, just paying a price that you find unfair. I don’t necessarily think it’s a fair price, either, but it is what the market will bear and the government will (for now) allow.

  54. vladthepaler says:

    How is this news? Woman shoplifts, gets caught. Move on.

  55. ogoldberg says:

    @Steel_Pelican: I guess I’m different than you in some fundamental ways. You allow U.S. law and the corporate interests that drive the free market act as “North” on your moral compass.

    I believe that just because you can get away with something, doesn’t mean that it’s ok. You argument doesn’t even support itself. Is it only ok to commit a crime of morality if you get away with it? Or are you simply saying that only those with enough power and resources to manipulate the free market and legal system should be allowed to define our sense of ethics?

  56. ogoldberg says:

    @Yourhero88: “While I agree that it is unfair to make racist and classist assumptions about why this woman stole, that is exactly what you are doing.”

    I disagree. First of all, I have already said that my point isn’t necessarily to defend her actions, so much as to critique the article, the fact that it was placed on this particular blog, and the reader response to it.

    Simply because I said she was stealing from thieves doesn’t mean that I am supporting her act. Rather, I am placing it in the context of a much bigger picture in order for people to think about prioritizing their anger.

    The main point of positing my “most likely so they have something to eat” comment was simply to give a new perspective to a one-sided comment thread and get the people posting hate filled comments to at least question themselves before they sentence someone to death on no evidence.

    as for your comment, “That’s why this fine society has foodstamps and welfare (another rant I’d rather not get on right now…)” It’s much easier to write me off with name-calling than to actually put any effort or thought into understanding my point. I’m very curious why you have time to call me a “tin foil hat wearer” but no time to engage in a discussion about real issues…

    “just because a business has some negative press, doesn’t mean stealing from them is justified.”

    I actually agree with this point, unfortunately it has nothing to do with the the discussion at hand. Again, I’m not defending her theft, just placing it in the context of a bigger picture. But you hit on something very important here. My problem with Walmart isn’t simply that it has bad press, it is that it treats real people, you and me, and our friends and family, and the communities we all live in, like dirt. The company is so big, that we are all effected by their actions in ways we aren’t always even aware of–and, no, that is not my “tin foil hat” talking, it is economic forces that affect us all, even those of us who sit in our comfortable homes feeling insulated from the world.

    My goal isn’t to just sit in my apartment spreading some nut-case theory, I am simply trying to provoke thought here, and a rational discussion of real life issues that touch all of our lives, whether or not we are aware of it. I hope I am at least causing some people to think a little bit about that.

    The chains of events that lead one person to behave one way, and lead another person to behave a different way are interlinked. It’s easy to sit back and judge others for their behavior from your computer, but the things that keep one person from ending up like any other person are often simply the pure luck of being born into a certain family in a certain neighborhood and going to a certain school, and meeting certain people, and getting certain jobs.

    You are where you are as much due to pure luck as due to your character. But the fact that you have the character you have comes as much from the luck of having the upbringing you had as it does to the luck of your genetic pre-dispositions, and the important events and relationships you have had in your life by pure luck that shaped you into the person you are today. You aren’t that different than me, you aren’t that different than Anenide Cherry, and you aren’t that different than Sam Walton. Whenever we try to create those distinctions, we are simply fooling ourselves. We all have the capacity to be in someone else’s shoes, we need to spend more effort actualy doing it.

  57. MandM813 says:

    @ogoldberg:

    I agree with you 100%. I didnt really think of it that way, but after reading your comment, I think you are absolutely right. Posting someone’s picture on the internet for stealing is just not right. Stealing isnt right, but two wrongs dont make a right.

  58. MandM813 says:

    Also, so true that many of us are where we are by pure luck of being born into a certain family, certain neighborhood, going to a certain schools, etc. Not saying that it’s ok to shoplift, but I think people should keep that in the back of their minds when judging others and making nasty ignorant comments.

  59. jjason82 says:

    The summary says that he stole MORE than $300 worth of items. The quote says that she only stole $287 (She paid $113 for $400 worth of stuff, 400-113=287).

    Obviously she’s a thief and all that but there’s no need for the editor to stretch the truth to make the loss seem like more than it was. It was under 300, not more than 300.

  60. FordPrfct says:

    @jjason82: “Cherry paid $113 in goods but had a total of $400 worth of stolen merchandise sitting in her cart, police said.”

    Paid $113. $400 in stolen merchandise. So, as I am reading it, she had about $513 worth of goods in the cart, of which she paid for $113.

  61. fatal616 says:

    I agree with the rest, typical leech of society that keeps popping out kids.

  62. WhatsMyNameAgain says:

    Puh-leez! If it were a starving mother taking food for her children, it wouldn’t have made headlines like this.

    Let’s not turn her into a struggling single mother, only doing what she needs to survive.

    I call bs.

  63. Ncisfan says:

    @fatal616: so your saying that my mom is a societal parasite beacuse she has 3 kids……. wow you and guroth are agood little communist population control supporting bastards aren’t you?

  64. Ncisfan says:

    @Ncisfan:
    *good little

  65. gc3160thtuk says you got your humor in my sarcasm and you say you got your sarcasm in my humor says:

    To the person who said it was not possible at the U-Scan, you are wrong, very wrong. Wal~Mart does not use the scale checks on the self-checkouts because of the amount of items people ring up there. The bags can’t be sat on the holders if there are too many and when they are taken off and put in the buggy if the scale check is turned on, the cashier has to continually override it. Which is why this can in fact and does in fact happen.