Apparently, the start-stop booking WWE is famous for applies to future endeavors, as well.
Newly called up (and criminally underutilized) WWE Diva "Emma" was cuffed and stuffed earlier this week for shoplifting at a local Walmart while the organization was in Hartford for Monday Night RAW. According to store policy and that pesky little thing we call the law, she was a thief.
By her account, she was absent minded.
Only Emma really knows for sure, but when I called the store for details involving her case, the thugs who run the security department tried to bully me from the second they got on the phone. That includes the marble-mouthed manager identified as "Jay," who refused to give me a last name.
I ain't gotta tell you dat.
I then called Walmart's media relations department and they promised me a statement, then left me on hold for about six hours. I called back to follow up and they apologized for leaving me on hold, before putting me on hold for another six hours.
They think they've won!
But I pass through Hartford on my way to my vacation home every year, so I think a DX-style invasion is in order...
Anyway, WWE was swift in its punishment, tossing Emma out with the rest of the trash, then realized no wait, that's probably not a good look, since we have folks on the roster who've done much worse. So according to the "official" statement, she still has a job, but is in twubblllllllle...
I would expect someone to be shitting in her handbag by the close of business today.
What's comical about this entire ordeal is how grotesquely it was handled from start to finish. I worked for three years as a Loss Prevention (LP) investigator with the now-defunct Jamesway department store, and two years as an LP manager. And if there's one thing I learned about shoplifters, it's that most of them are not criminals.
Not even close.
In fact, most of the cases I dealt with boiled down to bad judgment, or an impulse to be naughty that was acted on. Very rarely will you find a premeditated case of shoplifting and even rarer still, will the perpetrator be a "professional." Weighing against Emma, however, is the fact that most shoplifters buy and steal in the same visit.
But the one glaring trait of shoplifters?
A majority of them have not -- and will never -- commit other crimes. That's why I chuckled when WWE swooped down on poor Emma to take a stand against her (cough) "criminal behavior." As far as I'm concerned, having to call Stephanie McMahon to tell her you've been arrested IN CONNECTICUT is punishment enough.
Then there's that whole Internet thing and facing "the boys" backstage.
Simply put, Emma is going to be paying for that iPad case for a long time, and doesn't need WWE playing Night Court. Save that for the more serious hiccups like DWI, which are not uncommon in professional wrestling. Like shoplifting, that particular offense is not indicative of a person's moral character.
On the other hand...
No one was ever killed on the Interstate because someone stole too many Oakleys from Sunglass Hut, so it's understandable why people freak out when that DWI charge comes rolling down the pipe. But this? A plastic case that has Emma being publicly bedeviled?
Let the punishment fit the crime, because it already has.
A few times over.