A Texas couple is claiming that they were subjected to a strip search over a pair of $3 earrings when they stopped at a beauty-supply store to buy hair extensions, KHOU reports.
The demeaning incident occurred last week at Y Beauty Supply in southeast Houston, where they were allegedly threatened and forced to remain in the store after being overbilled for the pair of earrings that they never took.
“I picked them up, but I put them back,” Deadra Pattum told the news station. “I’m not a thief.”
“The owner said, ‘You people always steal,’” Pattum’s fiance, John Marsden, added. “And he said, ‘Give me the earrings and I call police.’ My rights were revoked.”
Marsden claims that he was made to strip.
“So I took off my socks and shoes and I took off my pants,” he said. “I was nervous … I was petrified.”
A security guard cleared up the issue with one look at the surveillance video. “She never left the counter with those earrings in her hand,” the guard said. “There was no evidence of shoplifting.” Officers from the Houston Police Department who viewed the video came to the same conclusion.
The shop owners claim that they have a huge problem with shoplifting at their business but wouldn't talk about this case, KHOU notes.
“Everybody doesn’t shoplift,” said Pattum. “Everybody is not a thief. There are still honest people in the world.”
“I want more than an apology from these people,” Marsden said.
The couple is hoping to press charges for the unwarranted search.
Read more at KHOU.