A supermarket worker who worked at the company for more than 17 years committed suicide after being fired for chasing a shoplifter.
49-year-old Shaun Winstanley who worked as a customer assistant at a Tesco Express chain won many awards at the company for his “outstanding service.” News of his death was just made public.
On January 2nd, 2019, he ran after a shoplifter at the store. The company stated that he put himself and a customer in danger.
The company fired him on January 14th. Shaun appealed the decision, but the company upheld the appeal on February 6th.
On February 13th, Shaun was found dead in his home. Investigators found that he had suffocated himself. A friend who was concerned they hadn’t heard from him since the day of the firing visited the home on February 13th and knocked. He heard no sound except the dog barking and called the police.
Carl Harris, the detective who arrived on the scene testified that he found Winstanley’s body on the floor in a lounge area of the home and that there were no signs of any injuries or any disturbance, he said.
According to The Mirror’s report, Shaun had a history of mental health issues that escalated when he was robbed at gunpoint in May 2018.
Since then his health continued to deteriorate, and investigation found that his firing made his mental health much worse.
His stepdaughter, heartbroken, says she wrote into the supermarket about the matter and was abruptly told the matter was closed:
“It is very raw and very difficult for us to come to terms with. He was of the very strong opinion that [suicide] was a selfish thing to do, so obviously it’s not something he would have done lightly, knowing he had children.”
“I am angry at Tesco. We have got our father in an urn in our living room. I sit there every morning with my coffee and look at him and wonder maybe if things had been different, he would still be here. I think there needs to be an awareness of mental health and I think employers need to be doing right by their employees.”
Tesco released a statement stating it’s:
“extremely sad to hear about the death of Mr. Winstanley,” the company said in a statement. Unfortunately, we are unable to comment on individual circumstances relating to our colleagues.”