Walmart Shopping Bag Killed Wife, Husband Alleges In Suit

A Walmart shopping bag allegedly packed carelessly by a store associate led to the death of a woman in Nebraska, her husband contends in a new suit.

The Walmart shopping bag related death of Lynette Freis is one her family believes could have been avoided had the thin plastic sack not been overfilled with groceries. (In Walmart, associates bag items as they are scanned and added to the tally in an area inaccessible to customers unable to bag their own items.)

According to Freis’ husband and the suit, the deceased shopped at the Walmart in Bellevue in April of 2010, purchasing two 42-ounce cans of an unspecified food and a bag of rice weighing two pounds. The items, with a combined weight of more than seven pounds, caused the single plastic bag to tear in the parking lot.

When the bag broke, Freis’ right big toe was fractured. But instead of a quick recovery, the woman suffered infections and underwent surgeries while hospitalized, finally succumbing to the injury in 2011.

In the suit, Freis’ family seeks $657,000 for medical expenses, and unspecified damages due to allegations of wrongful death, pain and suffering, loss of life, and funeral costs after the woman died of her injuries. It states:

“Despite multiple rounds of antibiotics and two surgical procedures… Mrs. Freis’ condition continued to decline with additional infections… which resulted in subsequent hospitalizations, and ultimately resulted in her death.”

Walmart spokesman Randy Hargrove commented on the suit:

“Customer safety is a top priority, and we take it seriously any time an injury is reported in one of our stores. Walmart is thoroughly investigating the plaintiff’s allegations.”

The Walmart shopping bag death lawsuit was filed in an Omaha court.