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Home Depot Employee Says He Was Fired After Trying to Stop Kidnapping

A Home Depot employee left the store to help police track down a potential kidnapper and was consequently fired for violating store policy.
Image: Home Depot
The Mall 205 Home Depot in Portland, Oregon.KGW

A Portland man said he was fired from Home Depot after trying to help a woman who said her child was being kidnapped.

Dillon Reagan, 32, said the hardware chain told him that he violated the company’s safety policy when he left the store to track down a potential kidnapper.

Reagan told NBC affiliate KGW that after finishing a shift on May 12 he heard a coworker yell for help. He said the coworker saw a violent domestic dispute occur in the store’s parking lot.

Reagan said he then stepped outside the store to assist and saw a woman in tears, according to KGW. “There's this lady who’s frantic and crying, ‘Somebody help me please! He's stealing my kid, he's kidnapping my child!’” he remembered.

Reagan said that he and his coworker left and called the police. “At the time, the only thing I was thinking about was the child's safety,” he said.

According to him, the dispatcher on the phone advised them to follow the man until the police arrived. When officers responded three blocks away, Reagan said that he and the coworker gave statements before returning to the store. He told KGW they returned to the store in about 10 minutes.

Reagan, who worked at the store for four years, said he was later reprimanded by his supervisor. “He said, ‘You did the wrong thing. You should have just gone back to work.’”

After reviewing the case for a month, Reagan was fired on June 19 from Home Depot. He was cited for arguing with a coworker earlier in the month, so this was his second offense, he said.

Home Depot sent a statement to NBC News that said, “We took a second look at this and decided to reverse our decision, based on the circumstances. We always do our diligence to make sure associates are treated fairly, which we’ve done in this case.”

The company also said that its “HR leadership wasn’t aware of the termination and once they reviewed the extenuating circumstances they reversed the decision.”

When KGW asked Reagan if he wanted to resume his position at the Portland store, he said no. He added that he wants his next employer to not second guess his actions during an emergency.

“What's good and what's right supersedes what's policy and what's orders,” Reagan said. “Hands down.”

Portland police told NBC News that the case was a "verbal argument" between and a couple that resulted in the man walking away with their child and ultimately no crime was committed.