Friday, January 27, 2012
© Copyright 2013
Gwinnett Daily Post
LAWRENCEVILLE -- A Gwinnett County jury has awarded $2.3 million in damages after a judge determined that a Douglasville Kroger destroyed and manipulated key video evidence involving an injured customer.
Reports said that 49-year-old Craig Walters was shopping at the Douglasville-area grocery store when he slipped on crushed fruit in 2008. His attorney, Lloyd Bell, said Walters suffered a serious spinal cord injury in the subsequent fall.
Walters sued Kroger, and a Gwinnett jury returned the $2.3 million verdict after a three-day trial. Gwinnett State Court Judge Joseph Iannazzone issued the initial ruling, finding that Kroger "acted in bad faith in failing to preserve the evidence and manipulating evidence to excuse its actions."
According to a synopsis issued by the Bell Law Firm, the store moved a surveillance camera after the fall, "then created a 'sample' video from the different angle, which did not show the area where Walters fell."
A Kroger representative said it disagreed with some of the decisions made during the trial and was evaluating whether to file an appeal.
The Associated Press contributed to this story