When Dean Crouch saw a man allegedly run out of a Tallahassee sporting goods store carrying a stolen handgun, he sprang into action. Crouch, the assistant manager, chased the man, who is also accused of threatening to shoot people, and tackled him.
However, now Crouch, 32, says he has been fired from his job at Tallahassee’s Academy Sports because he tackled the theft suspect who fled the store. According to News4Jax, Dean Crouch was fired “because he physically touched a ‘customer.’”
The Tallahassee man says he was suspended right after the incident and has now been terminated by the company. That news has led some people on social media to criticize Academy Sports for terminating a man many believe is a hero.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Jason White Is Accused of Stealing Guns From Two Tallahassee Businesses That Day
Jason White, 24, is accused of grabbing three guns from two different business: Academy Sports and Cash America Pawn early in July 2018.
On July 2, 2018, The Tallahassee Police Department wrote on Facebook, “The Tallahassee Police Department has made an arrest for three firearm thefts occurring Friday, June 29, 2018 at two different business.”
The first call came in from Cash America Pawn. “TPD officers responded to Cash America Pawn located 2535 South Adams Street at 11:21 a.m.,” police wrote.
“Employees reported a man requested to look at two handguns, a .45 caliber and a .380 caliber handgun. The man picked up both handguns and ran outside the store without purchasing them, fleeing the area in a silver Toyota.”
According to The Tallahassee Democrat, four hours later, police received another call, this time from Academy Sports, and discovered that “employees had detained a man who tried to run out of the store with a handgun, ammunition, and a backpack, which were stolen from the business.”
White was accused of grand theft of firearm by the Tallahassee Police Department. Three charges are pending in Leon County, Florida courts.
2. Dean Crouch Helped Catch the Fleeing Suspect
#Tallahassee just has a way of making national headlines, lol! I applaud Dean Crouch for his bravery even if foolhardy. Academy Sports + Outdoors needs… https://t.co/TuU8e6hKh7
— Scott Flowers (@TheScottFlowers) July 11, 2018
The Tallahassee Democrat newspaper story by Karl Etters further quotes Crouch’s attorney, Ryan Hobbs, as saying the company fired Crouch “because he put his hands on Mr. White” to detain him.
According to the newspaper story, Crouch and another employee observed White allegedly take the gun and try to flee the store, so they “tackled and subdued White at the exit doors.” White was then kept in an office until authorities arrived, and he allegedly made comments such as “I stole and I admit to it” and “I will steal again when I get out of jail,” The Democrat reported.
“My employee yelled, ‘Stop that man!’ And I turned and looked and saw Mr. White running from …read more