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AJAs 2020 Finalists


Shopping while strolling


 

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Date Aired or Published October 11, 2020
Media outlet where first aired or published: Halifax Examiner
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Short explanation of the story and how it developed:

Twenty-three-year-old Santina Rao went shopping at the Halifax Walmart on the afternoon of January 15, 2020 with her two children, one in a stroller. While there, a Walmart employee suspected her of shoplifting, which caused 11 authority figures — two Halifax Regional Police officers, one Halifax Shopping Centre security officer, two Walmart “asset protection” officers, two other Walmart employees paged to the scene, and four more so-called “Witness [police] Officers” — to confront Ms. Rao in the toy aisle. A dispute arose, and Rao was injured and arrested for resisting arrest, but notably, not for shoplifting. The charge was eventually dropped, but accusations of racial profiling and excessive police response remain. Moreover, the Serious Incident Response Team failed to conduct a through review of the events.

Resources of the newsroom (money and time) available to complete the story:

Stephen Kimber is a weekly columnist for the Halifax Examiner. He is paid $300 per piece.

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