A clerk at a Lucky grocery store was fired for trying to stop a shoplifter in Oakland, California.
Local residents were outraged to learn that the clerk of 17 years, named Tang, was terminated after being spat on by the shoplifter.
Tang told KPIX off-camera that he didn’t want to break the store rules, but was tired of seeing the shoplifting repeatedly happening.
Bradley White, a customer, told KPIX: “His reward is getting fired from his job.”
“I thought it was appalling,” added Diane Noroian. “He followed the man out of the store and was spit on.”
“In the Village itself, there have been laptops stolen, purses stolen – it’s frightening. I don’t feel safe coming down to the Village.”
Resident Kathy Neal said: “On a day honoring Martin Luther King, a man who broke the rules to do the right thing, this is appropriate we are here trying to support someday who did exactly that.”
Another resident, Bradley White, added: “We do not have enough police patrolling the hills.”
“There is an explosion on Nextdoor, there are all these posts,” White explained. “People are outraged this guy worked 17 years and later we find out he got fired.”
Lucky said it is corporate policy that employees don’t physically engage with customers.
Some customers have started a #SaveTang movement online.