Wal-Mart Ordered To Pay $9 Million to Woman Falsely Arrested for Trying to Cash Money Orders

Nitra Gipson went to her local Wal-Mart store the Houston, Texas area to cash a few money orders. However, store employees accused the 24-year-old of trying to exchange counterfeit Wal-Mart money orders for cash. Consequently, she was arrested and spent two days in the Harris County jail. Ultimately, the Harris County District Attorney’s Office declined to press charges after it was determined that the money orders were actually genuine.

Understandably, Gipson wasn’t going to take her false accusation and false arrest lightly, though—she filed a civil lawsuit against the retailer and recently won $9 million after the jury ruled in her favor. Overall, the jury determined that Wal-Mart should pay $8.2 million in actual damages and $800,000 for punitive damages. Nevertheless, Wal-Mart lawyers still indicated that they would appeal.

According to Gipson, she had the two money orders totaling $4,100 because she had recently sold her car to pay for her tuition expenses at Texas Southern University. Since the incident at Wal-Mart, Gipson graduated from college and says that she wants to be a lawyer.