VIDEO: Shoplifters beat, choke gutsy Bronx Family Dollar store worker: 'When I see theft, I feel so bad' – New York Daily News

A feisty Bronx dollar-store employee says she has been forced to become a one-woman security force due to the sluggish response from cops in the borough’s 44th Precinct.
Mendine Kabore, 23, who moved to the city from Burkina Faso in 2019, recounts that she’s been cursed, spit at, threatened, punched and choked. The $17-an-hour assistant manager had her wig pulled off — and routinely wrestles dollar-store desperados who may well have picked the store shelves clean by now if it weren’t for her determination to stop them.
Bronx Family Dollar worker Mendine Kabore gets into three physical altercations with shoplifters in a single day, captured on the store’s security cameras. (Security Footage/DCPI)
On Aug. 14, she said she called the police nine times regarding shoplifters – and that was on a rare shift when the Webster Avenue Family Dollar had a security guard working. He provided little deterrence.
The police usually arrive late, after the thieves have already made off with the goods, she lamented.
“I called them nine times that day. About nine different people,” Kabore told the Daily News. “It took 15 to 20 minutes [for police to show up].” Kabore was the victim of three other violent assaults that day.
A fourth woman spat at her. “People always do that,” Kabore said.
The other six calls were to report thefts from the store near E. 168th St. in Concourse Village. The store is only staffed with two people at the cash register.
A video of the first violent encounter that day starts with Kabore in a familiar pose, one hand on her hip and the other arm blocking the door.
A man wearing a bucket hat holding a plastic bag full of merchandise she says he didn’t pay for can be seen on the security footage trying to exit.
She gives him a gentle push to his chest and after a brief standoff, she finally grabs the bag of ill-gotten goods and tries to tug it out of his hand. The thief and the employee pull the bag back and forth until Kabore throws the man to the ground using a textbook rear body lock takedown. The shoplifter seems to smell defeat and goes slack, allowing Kabore to empty the contents of his bag on the floor and show him out.
The devoted Muslim immigrant, who is currently in school and hopes one day to be an emergency room nurse, lives in a two-bedroom apartment with her parents and three sisters, ages 2 through 21.
Mendine Kabore, left, with her mother. (Courtesy of the Victim)
“I came here to study,” said Kabore. “My dad was here first so we can finish school right here.”
Round two at her job came about an hour and a half later when she saw a woman stuff merchandise in her black duffel bag and then bypass the cash register.
Video shows, again, Kabore posted at the door, and again with hand on hip, she blocked the door. Quickly, the shoplifter pulled the purloined product out from under her shirt behind her back and tossed it on the ground, but Kabore still wouldn’t budge.
The customer appears to menace Kabore with something sharp and the employee grabs the woman’s wrist and they begin to grapple.
After several seconds, when it becomes clear the woman isn’t going to get through the door, the shoplifter backs away from the front door, opens her duffel bag and tosses all of the stolen products on the floor.
“When you try and stop them, they try to violate,” Kabore told the News, adding that she always tries to prevent thefts. “Some other people when they work here, they don’t care. I feel differently because, in my country, people don’t steal like that.”
She said you can identify a thief in Burkina Faso because shopowners usually cut the finger off when they catch them.
“When I see theft, I feel so bad. That stuff is not my stuff, yes, but I’m working here and I’m working here to go to school. If this stuff is not here, I’m not gonna get a job. If they close the store, I’m jobless. How am I going to pay my school?”
Surveillance video shows shoplifters attacking a worker who tried to stop them inside a Bronx Family Dollar store. (New York Daily News)
The last violent attack of the day occurred at 3:30 p.m., when a man and woman came into the store and started filling their granny cart with food, juice, frozen meals, cleaning stuff, towels and bedsheets, police said.
When they tried to leave, there was Kapore, ready for action.
“Can you please put back the merchandise before you go,” Kabore said she asked in her soft voice.
Store footage shows her taking on the woman shoplifter as the security guard hustles the man out the front door.
Kabore and the woman get into a tug-of-war with her. At one point in the wild melee, the female robber wrapped her arms around the head-strong employee from behind and put her in a chokehold.
The dollar-store desperados were caught on video ganging up on Kabore, slapping and punching her.
Eventually, the duo fled the store.
The battle proved too much for the security guard, who was on his first day on the job.
“He got scared and left the store,” she told The News.
He later said he was going on a break and never came back.
“I understand him. It’s not safe,” she said. “He didn’t know something like that would happen. He was surprised and scared.”
Medics treated her at the scene and she went back to work to open the store the next day.
“[Burkina Faso] is not that dangerous,” Kabore said, comparing her home country with the Bronx. “They don’t attack like that. Not like here. Here they have guns and they walk with knives and everything. People don’t have guns like that except for police people.”
Mendine Kabore, 23, who was assaulted by multiple shoplifters over the course of a day at a Bronx Family Dollar. (Courtesy of the Victim)
When asked how often violence happens in the store, responded, “I have to count.” Then she pulled out her phone full of security videos.
She did admit that terrorism in her home country is a huge issue and kills many people, especially in villages.
Kabore said she may have to reconsider how she approaches thieves.
“I put myself in danger. I feel so bad…if something happened to me, if I die, they can replace me here in this job but not in my family.”
On Sunday, as she worked and spoke to reporters who had come to talk to her about crime, a man came in who had been caught shoplifting before.
She paused speaking to the press to shoo him out.
“Go, get out!” she said. “He knows I’m not going to let him take anything.”
On Jan. 12, a shoplifter blasted another worker with pepper spray at the store, and on Oct. 25 a crook used a boxcutter to slice a 29-year-old store worker’s chest outside the store after the thief made off with $59 in goods, cops said.
Grand larceny in the 42nd Precinct is up 200% from last year, petty larceny spiked 27.8%.
Copyright © 2022, New York Daily News
Copyright © 2022, New York Daily News

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