Capitol Hill

QFC employee attacked by shoplifter while on break

SEATTLE -- It's starting to seem like employees at a Capitol Hill QFC deserve hazard pay. The store in the 1400 block of Broadway is the site of near constant police activity, most notably for a wheelchair-bound man who was once arrested wearing nothing but cherry tomatoes and was later trespassed from the store four times in one night.

Now, a QFC employee was attacked by a known shoplifter while on break just for wearing the store's uniform, according to the Seattle Police Department.

According to the police report for the incident, the victim was standing outside the store with another employee, both wearing their QFC uniforms, shortly after 6 a.m. June 9 when he saw a man he recognized as a frequent shoplifter quickly approaching.

The man chest-bumped the victim, pinning him against a railing, and started  yelling in his face about how he's never shoplifted in his life, according to the report. The man then reportedly started choking the victim to the point he couldn't breathe.

The victim was able to knock the man's hands away. And, when the other employee said she was calling the police the man ran off.

The victim told officers he didn't report the assault because other QFC employees have been fired for trying to stop shoplifters and he didn't want to lose his job. A manager found out about the incident two days later and called police.

While the attack itself was not captured on surveillance camera, there was video of the attacker shoplifting from the store earlier that morning, according to the report. The victim had not interacted with the man during that incident.