Three Lakeland Walmart employees charged with shoplifter's death

Posted at 12:14 PM, Jul 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-29 12:25:08-04

Three Walmart employees in Lakeland have been charged with manslaughter in the death of a man who shoplifted from the store in February, according to Lakeland Police Department.

Nathan Allen Higgins, 35, Crucelis Nunez, 23, and Randall Eugene Tomko, 58, were arrested Thursday.

The incident occurred 3:05 a.m. Feb. 7 after the shoplifter, Kenneth Edger Wisham, 64, tried to leave the Walmart with a shopping cart full of DVDs, police said. The three employees chased after him. He fell and the employees detained him while waiting for police to arrive.

The employees noticed he had stopped breathing and, despite efforts to revive him, Wisham died.

According to police, an autopsy revealed Wisham had 15 broken ribs at the time of his death. His cause of death has been ruled mechanical asphyxia due to restraint.

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