RIP Jdimytai Damour: Consumerism Claims One More.

ajc.com>associated press story

Wal-Mart worker dies after shoppers knock him down


Associated Press Writer

A Wal-Mart worker was killed Friday when “out-of-control” shoppers desperate for bargains broke down the doors at a 5 a.m. sale. Other workers were trampled as they tried to rescue the man, and customers shouted angrily and kept shopping when store officials said they were closing because of the death, police and witnesses said.

At least four other people, including a woman who was eight months pregnant, were taken to hospitals for observation or minor injuries, and the store in Valley Stream on Long Island closed for several hours before reopening.

Shoppers stepped over the man on the ground and streamed into the store. When told to leave, they complained that they had been in line since Thursday morning.

Nassau County police said about 2,000 people were gathered outside the store doors at the mall about 20 miles east of Manhattan. The impatient crowd knocked the man, identified by police as Jdimytai Damour of Queens, to the ground as he opened the doors, leaving a metal portion of the frame crumpled like an accordion.

“This crowd was out of control,” said Nassau police spokesman Lt. Michael Fleming. He described the scene as “utter chaos.”

Dozens of store employees trying to fight their way out to help Damour were also getting trampled by the crowd, Fleming said.

Items on sale at the store included a Samsung 50-inch Plasma HDTV for $798, a Bissel Compact Upright Vacuum for $28, a Samsung 10.2 megapixel digital camera for $69 and DVDs such as “The Incredible Hulk” for $9.

Damour, 34, was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead about 6 a.m., police said. The exact cause of death has not been determined.

A 28-year-old pregnant woman was taken to a hospital, where she and the baby were reported to be OK, said police Sgt. Anthony Repalone.

Police said criminal charges were possible in the case, but Fleming said it would be difficult to identify individual shoppers. Authorities were reviewing surveillance video.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc., based in Bentonville, Ark., called the incident a “tragic situation” and said the employee came from a temporary agency and was doing maintenance work at the store. It said it tried to prepare for the crowd by adding staffers and outside security workers, putting up barricades and consulting police.

“Despite all of our precautions, this unfortunate event occurred,” senior Vice President Hank Mullany said in a statement. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of those impacted.”

Kimberly Cribbs, who witnessed the stampede, said shoppers were acting like “savages.”

“When they were saying they had to leave, that an employee got killed, people were yelling ‘I’ve been on line since yesterday morning,'” she said. “They kept shopping.”

A woman reported being trampled by overeager customers at a Wal-Mart opening Friday in Farmingdale, about 15 miles east of Valley Stream, Suffolk County police said. She suffered minor injuries, but finished shopping before filling the report, police said.

Shoppers around the country line up early outside stores on the day after Thanksgiving in the annual bargain-hunting ritual known as Black Friday. It got that name because it has historically been the day when stores broke into profitability for the full year.

___

AP retail writers Anne D’Innocenzio and Mae Anderson and contributed to this report.

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22 Responses to “RIP Jdimytai Damour: Consumerism Claims One More.”

  1. Ridiculous display of bargain hunting. Human values were trashed here for few bucks !

  2. How sad this man lost his life — I hope the people who stampeded him and killed him feel remorseful.

    As for the woman who was 8 months pregnant — She’s just STUPID. What was she thinking? everyone knows that those sales are crazy filled with people. STUPID

    It was not the wisest decision but STUPID seems a bit harsh. People should expect to be able to go shopping without the fear of dying or jeopardizing their pregnancy. But it is a sad state of affairs that buying Christmas gifts is so important that a mother in the final stages of pregnancy wouldn’t choose to sit home.sorry if I seem to waffle on this one.

  3. i will never go into a wall-mart again. i hope they are sued. a truly ridiculous display! people are way too stupid right now!

  4. TRAGIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!!!!! I STILL CANT BELIEVE PEOPLE KEPT SHOPPING AND REFUSING TO LEAVE-WHAT IS WRONG WITH THEM???????????????????? SOCIETY HAS GONE TO THE GUTTER, PEOPLE ARE SOOOOOOO SELFISH!

  5. What a sad world we live in where we call people who happen to be pregnant and want to go to the store “stupid.” But that is what we have become… This incident is just further proof of the unraveling of our society. The video of them doing CPR to him on CBS shows bystanders laughing in the background. I hope they don’t believe in kharma.

  6. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to…”

    Ah, this meaningless mantra of our soulless generation!

    Dubbya always had these Milquetoast words at hand to substitute for action. And so do many others of us.

    Perhaps a lot less “thinking about” and “praying about” is needed. Maybe some active love in action. Maybe LOTS of active love in action.

    Although we can feel all sacred, saved, and soul-uplifted if we simply say that…

    “our (thinking-bereft) thoughts and (inconsequential) prayers are with…”

    Wal-Mart thinks and prays. Do you think and pray as they do?

    I believe thoughts, prayers and apologies are empty without restitution or some sort of action. God calls me to consider if I can help answer someone’s prayer or find someone who can instead of just offering thoughts and prayers. If I’ve wronged someone, He calls me to make physical attempts at restitution and retribution. It is not always the convenient thing but it’s always the right thing to do. I’m sure this company will open its wallet (as much as the lawyers think is sufficient) to protect its public image and try to forget about this tragedy as soon as possible.

  7. Thomas J. Hillgardner Says:

    Wal-Mart Stores Inc., based in Bentonville, Ark., called the incident a “tragic situation” and said the employee came from a temporary agency and was doing maintenance work at the store. It said it tried to prepare for the crowd by adding staffers and outside security workers, putting up barricades and consulting police.

    “Despite all of our precautions, this unfortunate event occurred,” senior Vice President Hank Mullany said in a statement. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of those impacted.”

    But did they even close the store doors for the rest of the day to honor the man who gave his life for the Sale? No. They opened again as soon as the police cleared the scene of the homicide investigation. Real thoughtful, Hank!

    TJ, I don’t disagree with you but I’m sure the store would justify reopening by pointing to the massive financial loss that would result from closing for the day. They would claim the families that work for the store would suffer. Closing the store would have sent an enormous message of morality. Too bad they blew the opportunity.

  8. Down with consumerism, and down with Christianity itself for giving rise to a holy tide that has led to THIS.

    Boycott Christmas.

    Boycott Christianity for all time.

    Tracie, You are definitely right that the “religion” of Christianity has given rise to the gluttony that mars this holiday. Jesus Christ did not start this trend and I believe he scorns what man has made this time to be. A boycott may not be out of order but I would say the boycott should be against the exchange of material gifts and going into debt to appease one another’s selfishness and material worship. It’s shameful that the loving Savior I know is associated with this heinous occurrence.

  9. this is an absolute outrage…i hope these people are proud of themselves. at least they got their Elmo doll this year for a bargain…and in return? a human life. this young man was simply trying to make a living and his reward was death due to the absolute degregation of our petty society. each and every person in that line should feel remorse…and i hope they do for years to come. i can only hope that jdimaytai’s family can overcome this horrible loss…

  10. It’s sad how people who profess to believe in the teachings of Jesus, Christians who are preparing to celebrate Christmas, could be so completely and utterly anti-Christian. I blogged about it at http://admonkey.org/2008/11/28/commentary-materialism-run-amok

  11. That is crazy, from now on there should be cops at every bargain day opening guarding and patrolling

  12. Why do people become like animals just to get a good deal…it’s insane. My thought and prayers are with the victims family and friends. RIP

  13. […] RIP Jdimytai Damour: Consumerism Claims One More. ajc.com>associated press story Wal-Mart worker dies after shoppers knock him down By COLLEEN LONG Associated Press […] […]

  14. Sadly I told my wife last week that there would be at least two “stampede” events on Black Friday; it seems to happen every year. Now unfortunately the Christmas season will bring sadness to at least one family for the rest of their life – and for what? An inanimate object of seemingly significant value for a few months?

  15. Consumerism may have try to entice us but the choice is ours! We allow ourselves to be dictated by greed. And we are not aware of it, we are ignorant of that greed is now the lord in our lives.

    http://novice101.wordpress.com/2008/11/30/have-we-lost-them/

  16. I am amazed at the lack of security, here in Phoenix every Black Friday event has several officers there to keep order hours before opening. This is something that is not done by the stores, but by the PD. I think perhaps ALL large cities should take such steps.

    Also, I noted in my own blog something many leave out- this was an African-American crowd. I wonder if this was more of the excitement rolling thru the black community that just got a little out of hand?

    Whatever the reason- no one should fear for their lives when working or shopping at any time of the year. And to continue to shop after taking a life is inconceivable to me! This crowd should have been stopped, one woman got out of the line because the crowd was becoming unruly and she feared for her well being.

  17. This is sick. It’s at the point now where consumerism–our appetite for acquiring “things”–supersedes our humanity and our empathy for others.

    Does this remind anyone else of “Lord of the Flies”?

  18. I’ll tell you what… I was cool with most of the sentiments until Julee’s comment about it being largely a black crowd doing the stampeding!

    Anyone can look on YouTube (as I noticed) and see throngs of white folks doing the same stuff!!!

    Tis is a SOCIETAL ill, NOT a racial one. We ALL get “a little out of hand” from time to time. Look at the riots that occur at soccer matches, concerts, and championship celebrations…

    She doesn’t seem wrapped too tight. Some nuts should stay in their shell.

  19. I have given Julee an opportunity to retract or reconstruct her comment. She explained to me that she would do no such thing and she doesn’t feel her comments have racist or prejudiced elements. She explained to me how she couldn’t possibly be a racist because she is 1/2 Mexican, 1/4 Native American and 5% Irish (not sure what the other 20% is). She claims that she’s merely pointing out the fact that all of the people were black and hopped up off of Obama’s victory (She’s from Arizona). I explained to her that I did not think she was prejudiced for pointing out that the shoppers were all black but she was prejudiced because she thinks it matters. She feeds off of the attention she gets from saying controversial things. I urge you to ignore her.

  20. […] killed on "Black" Friday was 34 year old Haitian immigrant Jdimytai Damour. People are saying that consumerism killed Mr. Damour. I believe that greed, violence and indifferent callousness killed him. There is […]

  21. […] Friday was 34 year old Haitian immigrant Jdimytai Damour. People are saying that consumerism killed Mr. Damour. I believe that greed, violence and indifferent callousness killed him. There is […]

  22. This is just awful. There should have been more security there with tasers and stuff to keep out these evil people searching for a couple extra bucks that they probably didn’t require to survive anyway.

    RIP Jdimytai Damour.

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