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Customer sues Costco for $670,000, claims employee used martial arts move to break leg

PORTLAND, Ore. - Court documents filed in Multnomah County Circuit court claim Costco employees asked customer Timothy Walls for his receipt as he left the Costco on NE Sandy Blvd. Employees say Walls refused to show his receipt.

The lawsuit alleges employees made Walls feel as though he was "held against his will" (click here, to read entire complaint). The time line of events detailed in the lawsuit include Walls' response. The lawsuit states, Mr. Walls grabbed the first Costco employee by the shirt collar, "pulling him away from the shopping cart holding his personal property."

Walls claims a second employee then intervened and, "...employed a martial arts type strike with his leg... fractured Mr. Walls' tibia."

A police report filed that day, January 28, 2013, details accounts from store employees. It includes a handwritten statement from the employee Walls accuses of breaking Walls' leg. The employee writes Walls had pressed the other employee against the wall and Walls had his hands around that employee's throat.

The second employee goes on to write, "I stepped in, pulled member off--asked him to calm down. He put his hands on me and then I put him on the ground, to calm down. Then I left upon members' request."

When KATU asked, Bill Stockton, the attorney representing Costco, "Does Costco believe its employees were right in everything they did?" Stockton replied, "Yes."

Attorney Clayton Morrison represents Timothy Walls. Morrison told KATU, "Our goal is to have this issue resolved and to obtain compensation for Mr. Walls in regards to some pretty serious injuries he sustained."

Morrison went on to say, "If you're a customer and you decide to walk out without showing a receipt what can the store do in that situation can the store detain you?" He added, "We would like to clearly establish under Oregon law that you have a right to walk out of the store without being detained."

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