Police say what started as a simple cell phone repair ended with tobacco spit being dumped on five laptop computers after a Wal-Mart customer reportedly became furious when an employee saw a questionable picture on his phone.
According to an Alcoa police report, a loss prevention officer at Wal-Mart, 1030 Hunters Crossing Drive, Alcoa, reported the July 10 incident at 4:56 p.m. Sunday.
At about noon on July 10, a man came into the store with a cell phone that wasn’t working correctly and asked an employee of the store to fix it, the report said.
Upon getting the cell phone to unlock and work properly, the Wal-Mart employee saw a picture on the phone of a female subject that was topless and whose breasts were exposed, the report said.
At that point, the man who brought the cell phone into the store became furious about anyone seeing his private pictures and demanded that the cell phone be destroyed.
The employee complied with the man’s request by hitting the cell phone repeatedly with a hammer until it was in several pieces. The man was given a replacement phone and then left the store, the report said.
But at 3:11 p.m., video surveillance at the store recorded the man re-entering the store through the Tire-Lube Express entrance while carrying a plastic bottle containing what appeared to be a brownish colored substance, which he allegedly poured onto five laptop computers at the store.
The man was then recorded leaving the store through the same entrance at 3:13 p.m.
The brownish substance was believed to be tobacco spit.
The five computers which were valued at a total of $3,590 were taken from the display to be cleaned, but could not be sold due to the damage, the report said.
The suspect was recorded by video surveillance driving away in a green-colored Pontiac sedan with hubcaps missing from both front tires.
The man’s smashed cell phone was collected by investigators and placed into evidence for processing.
Investigation into the incident is ongoing.