Safeway addresses "no chase policy" following Chico shoplifting incident

Nov 21, 2014 11:27 AM by News Staff

Safeway officials issued a statement Friday after a Chico man was reportedly fired for attempting to stop a suspected shoplifter outside the East Avenue store.

Friends of Curt Keables are outraged that he was allegedly fired for violating the companies "no chase policy" by stopping a high school student suspected of shoplifting. Keables reportedly knew the student's parents and had seen him shoplift several times before the incident.

Keith Turner, Safeway's Director of Public Affairs in Northern California told Action News Now the company is reviewing the case of Kurt Keables:

"We are in the process of reviewing the matter of Mr. Keables' pursuit and confrontation of a suspected shoplifter outside our Chico store. These types of cases can be difficult. While not everyone may agree with our policies governing the confrontation of suspected shoplifters, they are in place to protect the safety of our employees, customers and even a suspected shoplifter. Employees and suspected shoplifters have been injured and, in some cases, even died in such altercations. Contrary to previous reports, Mr. Keables did not tell our investigator that he knew the suspected shoplifter, so safety was and remains an important factor in our evaluation of this matter. No grocery product is worth risking someone's safety or life. We are giving this matter the time and careful consideration that is appropriate." Turner said.

Keables had been an employee at Safeway for more than 30 years. He told Action News Now he was advised not to make a statement because there is a chance he could get his job back.


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