Hey ya’ll, half of this story is from a coworker, but I’ll be posting in the first person as if it all happened to me. I don’t want to post anything on her behalf without a disclaimer in case management stumbles on this page, because it is a pretty identifiable story.
Anyway, we work in a well-known retail store going through a MAJOR change, so far, I’m loving the change. It has been REALLY difficult at times, with most of us almost quitting, but I’m glad I stayed on board. Anyway, the return policy is the only thing I cannot stand…we don’t have one at all. We’ll return any item at any point in time without a receipt, even if it is worn, stolen, 9 years old, etc...
My managers have told me even if the items
say “OLD NAVY” (not us) on the tag, we are to take it back if they’re insistent
that they purchased it from us, because we don’t want to upset anyone.
Corporate says they expect 1% of people to abuse the system. I’d peg it
at about 10 or 15%, but really, it is more about the number in dollar amounts
rather than the number of fraudulent people. The ones that do it KEEP
doing it, driving MY numbers down so that almost every single day I am in the
Enter TC– trashy couple. I’m alone at the register when TC comes in the door; I can hear them yelling from outside of the mall doors. The man walks in with tubes and bandages all in and over his face, and the woman is holding an unpackaged air mattress that is halfway in its box.
“I want to return this. It has blood on it from my boyfriend getting stabbed on it.”
My jaw hits the floor…I’ve returned some questionable stuff before: bathing suits without hygienic liners, underwear that ‘doesn’t fit’, shoes that have clearly been worn for years. But I can’t even fathom what possessed this woman to think it was socially acceptable to return a biohazard-laden mattress involved in an attempted homicide.
The man/would-be-homicide victim interjects: “AND I need cash back. We can’t get the receipt because our house is on lockdown because it’s a crime scene.”
I recover as best I can, and explain that without a receipt I can still do the return, but it would be given on a store credit only. If they wanted, they could wait until they could retrieve the receipt, as it doesn’t matter how long ago the purchase was.
TC man starts FREAKING OUT.
Leans over the counter, points at the stiches going up his neck and yells “I JUST GOT STABBED! AND YOU’RE GOING TO DO THIS TO ME!?!?”, and starts yelling the same mantra to all the customers in the vicinity. TC woman starts throwing police reports and hospital records all over the counter to prove that the event happened. (lady… your boyfriend has gruesome stiches and tubes coming out of his face. I believe you. That isn’t the issue here.)
(It’s hard to imagine that such classy couple with such a positive demeanor and such a well-developed sense of social expectation would ever be the victims of a violent crime. . .)
Seeing this is going nowhere, I call over a manager. She is also shocked, but due to our return policy, her hands are tied. I get it, not her fault. She could lose her job if she refuses. She somehow talked them into taking the store credit, and processes the return. She puts on gloves and takes care of the item according to corporate standards.
But I am left with so many lingering questions….. How did they get the mattress out of the house but not the receipt?? Did they bring it to the ER with them? Did I just become an accomplice in the disposal of homicide evidence? And why does corporate train managers to dispose of biohazards??!?
The next day, the same manager tells me “Don’t worry, if you want, you can request an HIV test, and the company will pay for it.”