AUSTIN COUNTY, Texas – An Austin County grand jury has determined that no criminal charges will be filed in the Jan. 15 incident involving an industry woman who was locked inside a local store.
First reported on Fox 26, 65-year-old Betty Smith went to Lindemann Grocery Store off State Highway 159 to pick up ice cream and a honeybun for her son on January 15. Before making her purchase, she says she found a $50 bill on the floor.
SURVEILLANCE VIDEO: Woman, 65, seen on video beaten by clerks over $50 found on floor
Betty Smith, 65, tells FOX 26 she went to Lindemann Grocery Store in Austin County to pick up some ice cream and a honeybun for her son when she was attacked by the clerks after she found $50 off the floor.
“The woman at the counter says, ‘Oh no, you can’t leave with that…that might be my friend’s money. He was in here earlier,” said Smith.
As she proceeded to check out, she told FOX 26 the clerks would not let her purchase the desserts. Surveillance video shows one female clerk ripping the money out of her hand. As she tries to get it back, another female employee and a male employee shove and restrain her.
EXCLUSIVE: Austin County woman attacked by grocery store clerks over $50 bill she found
**EDITOR’S NOTE: This interview was shot before grand jury decision.**
The store’s manager tells FOX 26 all of the employees involved have been terminated. None of them face any charges at this time.
Family members were also involved that night as they tried to get Smith out of the store. Police were called and Smith’s daughter was arrested.
“Rather than rush to judgment on a case with a complex set of facts, my office studied all the evidence in detail,” District Attorney Travis J. Koehn. “The evidence showed that there was the significant additional context which was not shown in the initial public reports issued by some of the parties involved,” he added.
Local and Houston-based activists have called for a thorough investigation into this matter. The Houston FBI office has also been contacted, and an agent has been assigned to the case for review.
Stay with FOX 26 for more updates on this story.
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