Woman receives death threats after grocery store cashier says he was fired for giving hugs

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.


WHITEHALL, Mich. – A Whitehall grocery clerk was fired after he says he hugged a customer.

It happened at Plumb’s Valu-Rite Foods when Fred Civis, a cashier for 39 years at the store, inappropriately touched another customer, according to charging documents. On July 29, a 25-year-old pressed assault charges.

Civis is officially charged with one count of misdemeanor assault and battery, and faces up to 93 days behind bars and/or a $500 fine. Since he lost his job, the community started the Facebook page, “Boycott Whitehall Plumb’s for Fred.”

While the page’s likes are growing exponentially, comments have led to death threats to one family.  Kim Woodland told FOX 17 that she is wrongly accused of being the victim who pressed charges.

“The things I’ve read and the vulgarity, I can’t even go there,” said Woodland. “I have kids. I have kids that live here I have a great family, we we’re literally being thrown under the bus because someone needed someone to lynch, and I think it’s sickening.”

Woodland and her husband Jeff grew up in the Whitehall area, but now she said she feels like she does not recognize their hometown. She said her family shops regularly at Plumb’s in Whitehall and called Civis “helpful.” But about six months ago, she said she called Plumb’s management to report Civis showing erratic behavior twice during that week.

“(Civis was) huffing and puffing, and slamming his pen down, and swearing, and muddling the drawer,” said Woodland. “It was a bit aggressive, and it made me on guard; I shouldn’t have to feel that way. Do I wish that he got fired? No. Did I ask for him to get fired? No.”

Then earlier this week, her husband posted a comment on “Boycott Whitehall Plumb’s for Fred,” stating:

“The guy deserves to get fired he got a little too close to my wife and she put in a complaint a couple of times. Before you push like and boycott Plumb's wait till the truth comes out before you judge, that holds true for all things in life."

Woodland responded to her husband’s comment and told FOX 17 that “My husband’s couple of words have literally been transpired into something that it’s not.”

Jeff Woodland’s comment sparked dozens of comments that call him and his wife names. Woodland said it has even led to death threats to their family.

“The things that have been said are disgusting,” said Woodland. “I don’t know the details of what’s going on with Fred or this lawsuit, it’s not our business, but I can’t fathom being on the opposite end where a victim is getting victimized in a sense, because someone that’s going to file that complaint, they’re going to be up against what I’m up against.”

Plumb’s issued this update to their original statement:

“Plumb’s Whitehall Market received prior customer complaints regarding inappropriate touching by Fred Civis. He was advised that a subsequent incident could lead to his termination when the latest incident occurred. Fred’s resistance to changing his behavior despite specific direction from management and a final customer complaint regarding inappropriate touching by Fred resulted in his termination. Though we have received criticism for terminating his employment, we remain firm in our belief that our employees must comply with policies that ensure the safety and comfort of all our customers comes first.”

According to the group’s Facebook page, organizers posted that there will be a peaceful rally in the Whitehall Plumb’s parking lot Saturday Aug. 6 at 10 A.M.

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  • Bob

    Oh she is such a “victim”. She is seriously in need of therapy. So he made you uncomfortable- get over it. And it is simple to avoid his hugs as waking up in the morning. Instead Mrs. Drama Queen screams how horrible it was and I am sure she is now seeking counseling for PTSD. Or in this case- PTHD. The fact she grew up there and shopped there her whole life shows that she had no problem until recently when she suddenly didn’t like it anymore. But instead of dealing with this as a grown up she plays the drama queen victim. She could have easily have discussed this with him – but instead she called the cops. If she would have taken the time to have a talk she could then have always greeted him with an outstretched hand for a handshake and avoided the violent assault of being hugged. Problem solved. But that would not get her the sympathy she was looking for nor would it have allowed her to sue. Which is what she really wants.

    I also love how she makes it sound like the assault charges ‘just happened’. News flash lady- someone has to file a police report before they will take any action. And that would be you. Why go to such and extreme ? Why go out to destroy this mans life instead of just handling this like a grown up?

    I hope she loses her lawsuit against the store and him. Because that is what this is really about. How she can make some easy money at other folks expense.

    Guess we shouldn’t expect anything less from an unemployed pathetic leech of society.

    • Jen

      Did you even read the story?! Another victim pressed charges, not this family. The comments I’ve read are disgraceful and shameful. Maybe if it was your wife, daughter, sister or mother going thru this you would feel differently, or if you even knew both sides of the story. There’s always more than one!

      • Kaysie

        It’s a shame people can’t respect personal boundaries any more. If a strange man (or even someone I knew casually) walked up and hugged me, I would freak the fuck out. Nobody touches me without my permission.

        • Bob

          Kaysie- Really? Did you know he always greets people with a hand shake first? And Then He LETS The Customer Decide If HE Can Give Them A Hug? HE absolutely Respected Peoples boundaries- but of course hypersensitive drama queens like yourself are always looking for someone to persecute so you can garner sympathy as a victim.

          Thanks for sharing your ignorance and lack of education with us. Now go cash your welfare check.

        • jan

          She said she shopped there all her life and he worked there for 39 years… I think they knew each other. Not just some random people meeting on the street. Not defending his nor her actions. Just think it is a shame.

        • Lisa

          Really? You’d “freak out” if someone hugged you? How extremely sad is the day when a hug is viewed as an act of aggression. You know that’s what’s wrong with this world today. You’re the one with issues dear not this harmless man.

      • Bob

        Jen- Do some basic research before jumping on people. She is 25 yo and so was the person who filed the charges- On The Same Day And Time of the Incident. Duh. Also- you miss the point of what I posted. She had known this guy for years growing up and never had issues with being hugged before. So something in her life changed and she no longer wished to be hugged- fine. She was even on good friendly terms according to her own words. So why didn’t she ever ASK HIM to Stop? Instead she went straight for his jugular.

        Also- as II pointed out she could have easily resolved this issue just by asking him to shake hands. Like he does with Many of the people who come there. Watch the video’s of him greeting people and in the majority of the clips he always offers a hand shake first- and then LETS the Customer Decide if they want a hug. But did miss drama queen do even that? Nope. It speaks volumes of just how shallow and narrow minded this woman is as a person. She is pathetic. I am sure we will be reading of her major lawsuit quite soon.

        • Ignorance shoul dNOT prevail....

          BOB: (Or whomever needs to read FACTS) Let me quote your oh so eloquent words here with ACCURATE FACTS as a response….

          BOB: “Mrs. Drama Queen screams how horrible it was”
          *In this video or in print – never once was it stated that she was hugged or touched. The actual 25 year old victim must have been touched in some manner, but not Kim – whom you are directing your ignorant remarks to and by the way slandering her name.

          BOB “Fact she grew up there and shopped there her whole life shows that she had no problem until recently when she suddenly didn’t like it anymore”
          *She grew up in that local area- yet where was it stated that she shopped in THAT store her whole life and had NO problem with Fred- yet suddenly “didn’t like it” …..

          BOB “but instead she called the cops”
          *“BOB” where is it stated that KIM called the cops? Im sure the lady that DID file charges made a complaint, then the cops got involved after watching video surveillance CONFIRMING charges.

          BOB:“She could then have always greeted him with an outstretched hand for a handshake and avoided the violent assault of being hugged.”
          *Kim was NEVER hugged by this man, nor had a handshake? There was NO VIOLENT assault to Kim- who did the interview.

          BOB” Allowed her to sue Which is what she really wants.”
          * Kim is NOT suing this man. He had files charged against him by a 25 year old lady (and now 4 others have stepped up to share their stories/complaints as well) NOT KIM. And P.S The Prosecuting attorney have viewed the Plumbs video surveillance and THAT’S what made him get arrested as whatever the young lady alleged was CONFIRMED through video.

          BOB “I also love how she makes it sound like the assault charges ‘just happened’. News flash lady- someone has to file a police report before they will take any action. And that would be you.”
          *Again…You can make a complaint about something making allegations…in order to be arrested- there was video subpoenaed that VALIDATED the ladies complaints which resulted in HIS ARREST. And NO that was NOT KIM, it was the 25 year old lady (which name has BEEN released- and is public knowledge).

          BOB: “I hope she loses her lawsuit against the store and him”
          *Kim Woodland NEVER filed and lawsuit against anyone in her life. Especially not against Plumbs or Fred. Actually I’m not sure where you ever read an actual lawsuit was filed…Charged were filed against him- period! (A little education in your past might shed light on this “Bob” )

          BOB: “Guess we shouldn’t expect anything less from an unemployed pathetic leech of society.
          *She is 25 yo and so was the person who filed the charges”. The lady who was interviewed was quite obviously NOT 25 “BOB”. But yes- the young lady that filed the charges is 25. And where did you read either of them are unemployed? Maybe YOU “Bob” need to work more as you have too much time on your hands- as based just on THIS thread you have spent a lot of time venting MISTRUTHS and BS.

          BOB: “She had known this guy for years growing up and never had issues with being hugged before. So something in her life changed and she no longer wished to be hugged- fine. She was even on good friendly terms according to her own words” Where was it ever stated that she has known this man her whole life?
          *Where was it stated that she was hugged before and never had issues with it before. Kim was NEVER hugged by this man? Kim nor myself would not want or expect to be hugged by a cashier or grocery bagger anyway….Grocery stores are not an environment that one should be prepared for physical contact/hugs or anything else. Buy groceries- Bag them PERIOD. Never was it stated she was on good “Friendly” terms with him she called him “HELPFUL” in the interview. Seeing the same employee at an establishment does not make them automatic friends. I have seen the same barista at Starbucks for years when I drive through. That does make them a friend, nor would I kiss/hug or touch them- I am there for a product….not Love or affection.

          BOB: “She is pathetic. I am sure we will be reading of her major lawsuit quite soon”
          * Umm “Bob” didn’t you just post earlier (read above) that you accused her of already filing one? Again she has nothing to do with any charges that were filed or pressed, as she was not the VICTIM.

          BOB: “Drama queen looking to make a quick buck by suing the store and him.”
          *Again Mr. Intelligence….AKA “BOB”…a quick “Buck” is rarely quick in any lawsuit. And last I heard- neither are being sued…there are charges pressed for allegations only the VICTIM Is aware of. Again NOT THE person you seem to have confused with Mrs. Woodland.

          BOB “She is a straight out liar- the Police have her NAME as the one who filed the complaint”
          *Really “BOB” the police have her name? The police report is PUBLIC, Fred’s family made an announcement publically who the person was. Please – feel free to post that when you locate that, as I won’t because of the pure ignorance expressed on this news thread- no one of true compassion would thrust her into the lime light to be victimized again by such ignorant uneducated people as yourself.

          BOB: “What a pathetic piece of welfare trash. One more thing- if for some un-Godly reason she wins her lawsuit then the state and federal government should go after her to repay all the welfare and Public assistance money she has taken over the years.”
          *Ohhh you god loving/compassionate man “BOB” (Bob That’s sarcasm if you are smart enough to pick up on that)…Do enlighten me where you have heard this family is/has been or was abusing the welfare system? You however should be referred to for benefits from the disability act as you “SIR” are dumber than the rock you must of crawled out from.

      • David

        Read closely what was just written – if you don’t want a friendly hug stick your hand out and give his hand a shake. Problem solved.

    • nikki

      You, are a true asshole. She never received a hug from FRED because her and her family are not the ones that pressed charges. Get your facts straight before you act all barney bad ass and run your mouth. Good God can anyone read these days. Don’t act all educated if you cant even follow the story and know for a FACT what is going on. A innocent family is being caught in the middle of this mess and they did nothing to deserve it.

      • SPAT

        i don’t know anyone from the whitehall area so i am just an outsider ..i can tell u this , after reading the article everyone on here is so emotionally involved that if they actually read what was said from this woman she said ” she only reported ” about six months ago, she said she called Plumb’s management to report Civis showing erratic behavior twice during that week.” She was concerned….and we are sending death threats to her ???????? She didn’t call the cops…she told management. We are suppose to report that stuff in this day and age. She also said “(Civis was) huffing and puffing, and slamming his pen down, and swearing, and muddling the drawer,” said Woodland. “It was a bit aggressive, and it made me on guard; I shouldn’t have to feel that way. Do I wish that he got fired? No. Did I ask for him to get fired? No.” PLEASE PEOPLE BEFORE YOU CONTINUE TO HURT THIS FAMILY WAIT UNTIL YOU HEAR THE WHOLE STORY. ALSO….IF SOMEONE WALKED UP TO ME AND HUGGED ME AND I DIDN’T KNOW THEM IT WOULD OF FREAKED ME OUT ALSO….NOT BECAUSE I AM NOT AN AFFECTIONATE PERSON BUT I HAVE BEEN TOUCHED IN SUCH A WAY WHEN I WAS YOUNGER BY ADULTS THAT WERE UNACCEPTABLE !!! I feel horrible for all parties involved and please wait for all information to develope before you judge and continue your rallying and your support but you are acting completely opposite of what we rallying for “hugs”. Don’t be so mean with your words, practice what we are rallying for “hugs”. Praying for all involved and will continue to rally for Fred in my own way by supporting financially and boycotting Plumbs but will NOT BE THREATENING THE FAMILY THAT PRESSED CHARGES OR THE WOODLANDS THAT I HAVE NEVER MET BUT ONLY REPORTED A BEHAVIOR THAT , IF TRUE, SHOULD OF BEEN REPORTED. If you went to a store not knowing Fred or even knowing Fred and seen the way he was acting then wouldn’t you report it??????? It really was inappropriate behavior (swearing) and she should not be receiving such harsh words from any of you. This is just my opinion so take it or leave it. But please support Fred how you see fit but leave the families alone until you hear all that has to be said. HUGS to you all and Fred seems like a great guy.


          Spat…You couldnt of said this any better or Clearer. I have read everything and watched the same interview as everyone else. HOW in gods name is everyone creating such outlandish ideas/accusations and opinions based on ingnorance? In our society mental health assistance – lacks. if someone has witnessed behavior in a public setting that is abnormal/threatening or intimidating,…it is our duty to alert someone. That- i can not blame her for bringing to someones attention. BUT the lawsuit that was filed- was from a 25 year old young lady (and also 4 MORE women have come forawrd) as well. All of which had nothing to do with the lady in the video. If the Lady in the video stated numerous times she was NEVER HUGGED by this guy- how in the hell can everyone ignorant person on here keep making remarks about that?

          • Jen Holley

            fact based argument…. I agree with you on almost everything except I do think whomever filed the complaint with the cops it was a bit extreme, and as for the other 4 women who filed charges no one knows their real motives so I would be extremely skeptical could be opportunists who smell blood in the water and just wanna try to get their share(what they expect to get from an unemployed man I will never know). People just need to let the situation unfold and see what comes out. As my husband says the truth will all come out in the wash.

    • respect and boundaries

      They did tell him.

      He didn’t listen.

      Many people now have spoken about his temper and his inappropriate touching.

      He needed a job coach.

      He had a final warning at work.

      How many times does someone need to be told?

      It is sad because I think he does not understand.

      But the rest of you are making it worse for him.

      Touching anyone, that makes them uncomfortable is a crime.

      THEY don’t have to get over it.

      You need to learn respect and boundaries.

  • geniese

    do you have witnesses to these threat??? Oops nope you don’t as no one there cares for you anymore LMAO suck it up buttercup~~~it was an effing hug and by the looks of you, you could use one LOL can’t wait to see your witnessess LMAO

    • Bob

      Exactly. She refuse to show anyone these “threats” – even the police and the press. Just proves even more that this woman is nothing but a drama queen look for sympathy as a victim.

      • Seymour

        Shut up bob you are such a tool what makes u think she is guilty I think she’s telling the truth plus wouldn’t you feel uncomfortable if a guy was touching you in inappropriate places

  • Bob

    I watched the video- and am now absolutely sure that she is a drama queen looking to make a quick buck by suing the store and him.

    If you watch the video of him – he first offers customers his hand for a handshake. Not a hug! All she had to do was stick out her hand- instead she played the victim. And for one reason- to get rich of other people of fake assault charges.

    Not to mention she is a straight out liar- the Police have her NAME as the one who filed the complaint. Deny it all she wants but that is a fact.

    This town needs to treat her like a leper. Not her kids – just her.

    What a pathetic piece of welfare trash.

    One more thing- if for some un-Godly reason she wins her lawsuit then the state and federal government should go after her to repay all the welfare and Public assistance money she has taken over the years.


      Ironic how so many people on here have stated the simple fact that THE LADY IN THIS VIDEO had NOTHING to di wtih any lawuist that was fiiled nore was she EVER HUGGED by this man? How cab she be ridiculued about “HUGS” or lawsuits, or even be called a lair when there are numerous webistes covering thi story that have in FACT twisted everything just as some of you ignorant people have on here. There would be NO THREATS posted HERE -since THIS POST was was created AFTER THE interview as done. The lady in the interview was NOT THE “Victim”. The 25 year old lady that filed the lawsuit has been made PUBLIC and is also availablet o the public for those of you who WANT TO KNOW FACT. The interview nor this woman has NEVER stated she was TOUCHED OR HUGGED by him? Get a grip!

    • Ignorance should NOT prevail....

      Yes…someone who DIDNT file a lawsuit or press charges SHOULD EXPECT more from her community as she has been slandered through out this thread when in fact it was a young women (25 year old that claims she was inappropriately touched etc.) NOT THE LADY IN THE VIDEO. Which by the way the true victim (that has NOT done interviews yet) has the right to file with OUT being attacked or slandered. How will the community feel when they are informed of VIDEOS being used by the Store to VALIDATE these claims…Which yes resulted in his aresst.

  • Kerry

    I wonder if he should be checked for Alzheimers…just a thought. Because I’m sure he is nice and friendly and was for many years but what if he did start to act different, and doesn’t even realize it. My dad showed some anger and depression in the beginning of Alzheimers and he said a few inappropriate things which he NEVER would have done in the past. I hope this all turns out the best for everyone. Its a shame it got this big. I hope all the truth comes out.

  • tracyd112

    He slammed a pen down and what is Muddling the drawer and huffing and puffing? come on Woman get a life I bet if there history is checked they have made complaints to police for playing in the streets they just seem like the type.People like this have nothing more to do in life then complain about anything and everything because they are miserable.The Husband got mad because Fred got to close to is Wife? come on it was in a Store in public.They need to check into this further because something does not smell right here.
    I do not condone Death Threats but people do have a right to be mad and upset but not to the extent of being violent or causing harm to anyone.

  • TheFoundingFathers

    All I can say to this stupid ass lady is PACK YOUR SHIT AND MOVE ASAP! From what i have read and the lies you told on TV it sounds like you are NOT WELCOME IN THAT TOWN! Kind of sucks for the kids, but like what was stated above this mess is 110% HER fault!

  • Kaysie

    Touching someone inappropriately or without their consent is assault. You wouldn’t walk up to a black person and touch their hair, or a pregnant woman and rub her belly. The guy had been warned about it before, and continued to do the same thing. Absolutely he should be fired.

    • GUEST

      Realllly??? This person could have easily said no thank you or AVOIDED the hug. Its not like he chased her down the street, tackled her, and then hugged her. Seriously people. Its so easy to WALK AROUND him or politely decline. Oh My god someone hugged me LET ME SUE and ruin this mans life. Ignorant, selfish, and complete crap. So tired of people like this. If you dont like to be touched, that’s fine but you dont have to ruin someones life over it. I think the store fired him to protect their own selfish, money hungry asses.

      • Mike

        So if this guy was hugging children without asking the patents you’d be OK with that? When I go out in public I have the notion I won’t be touched without my permission. I don’t like it when people stand to close during a conversation. I’m sure you’d be showing the same compassion for this guy if a stranger would walk up to your mother on the street and touch her without her consenting. Or do you think that’s acceptable behavior?

    • GUEST

      and FYI when i was pregnant strangers came up to me all the time to rub my belly. I didn’t freak out and sue them or get them fired from their job if they were at their place of work. Its called being a decent human being and a grown up. These people are acting like children.

    • RUkiddingme

      If getting a hug or a handshake from some old guy is the worst thing that happens to you on any given day, you should be happy. Get over yourself. It’s as simple as saying “No thank you.”.

      It’s people like you that have trashed society. Do you know what you and those like you have done over the years? As a 40-something white male, if I were in a situation where I had to intervene to assist or save a woman or a young child, while I would still take the risk and do it because that is just how I am, I would absolutely hesitate and weigh the consequences & risk of being accused of something inappropriate. Hopefully my hesitation wouldn’t be too long and something bad would happen, but that is the reality of what you & those like you have created, and that is just bullshit and wrong. I am not alone in this, and I’ve had this conversation with many others, most of whom agree. So let’s just hope you are never in need of assistance and the only one around you is some guy. You might just reap what you have sown.

  • Kitty

    Sounds like this couple should go live in a community of other crabby unfriendly people. The woman is bad but her husband is worse. Like HE needs to be giving people advice about judging!

  • Naomi Smith

    I’m sorry for the people who work for Plumbs stores a lot of people have said they hope this closes Whitehall store down now. I personally will never walk into any Plumbs store knowing corporate is also behind this bull. I would never of guessed this came from someone from our community. Your sad lady very sad shame on you your poor children.

  • Whitehall

    All Kim is trying to say is that they did not file the lawsuit. But no one is listening. What if it were your sister? or mother whose name was being dragged thru the mud – I am sure you would not appreciate it.

    I know a woman who knew Fred only by sight in the store. One day he hugged her, kissed her on the forehead and blew her a kiss goodbye. She thought about complaining but knew he was special and thought he had meant no harm. But that is NOT normal friendly behavior that one does to a customer.

    I myself felt uncomfortable enough to bypass his lane when he was working. He never touched me but something wasn’t right. I believe he means NO HARM but people should not have to avoid the cashier.

    We have no idea of how many complaints Plumbs had. We have no idea how many times Fred was talked to about this situation. There are MANY facts which are unknown.

    Support Fred but stop all the threats and nastiness given in the name of ‘Fred’.

  • Mike Jones

    Do you idiots even know how to read? She did not report him to the police or file a lawsuit. Another person did, Whitehall folks sure are quick to shoot first ask second.

  • Never Again- open yer own door

    I held a door open for what turned out to be a butch feminist who promptly threatened to have me arrested for “disrespecting her gender”…so…yeah, that’s where “hope and change” has led us.

    • yup

      Saw one the other day such a bitch the electric doors wouldn’t even open for her. People are such assholes. That half percent wrecks it for everyone else. As far as I am concerned if you don’t like it go swim with a ROCK…….

    • Ron

      Always has to be one ignorant inbred racist who finds a way to blame everything on the president. Put down your meth pipe and moonshine and get a life loser.

  • Boo-Hoo

    Well, don’t fret, he won’t be hugging you any longer.
    His life is ruined, but your “rights” are unscathed and you won!
    Boy…you must be soooo proud!

  • Incredulous

    She didn’t say he hugged her. She didn’t say she filed charges. She didn’t say anything.What a pack of slobbering animals on this site. I hope the rabble that’s here doesn’t represent the town of Whitehall. Disgusting. YUP-Go f yourself. Boo-Hoo-Go f yourself. Guest–Go F your mother.

  • KCMama

    Wow, this makes me so glad I don’t live in this community…..Holy Cow! First off, I am glad that Fred has so many supporters, but geez people read a little. There have been SEVERAL complaints against this man….sounds like he has his little “favorites” and puts in a little extra love in those hugs. As for the lady in the article….do you people know how to read? She said SHE DIDN’T FILE THE LAWSUIT…..She is obviously not the 25 year old who did (no offence to her for not looking 25). Being passionate about a cause is great…but it doesn’t mean you get to bash the rest of the people that aren’t for your cause.


    so i’m guessing her grandchild or kids or nephews/nieces can do the same when this monster comes to hug them………(meaning kim woodland) if i see it ill call on her for molestation!

  • itsjustme

    If she was so upset by his behavior in the past with him slamming his pen and muddling the cash drawer. WTF did she continue to go there,. I’m certain there are other stores she and her family could have gone to. I don’t believe a word of what she said and am pretty darn sure she in this for a hopeful paycheck. May the courts see that his hug was harmless and something he has done with regular customers for YEARS and meant no harm. May they also, if she decide to go after him and the store throw her case out of court as a frivolous suit.

  • Vicky

    From what i got from the News Cast is this Lady is not the one who filed Charges some 25 year old person did, why isn’t the News Interviewing the person who got charged? Then again this Ladies Husband says he got a little to close to his wife,??? Sounds like she was in his check out line and he was having a bad day and was even on a first name basis with FRED???? He didn’t get fired because of her complaint he got fired from something else.

    • tina

      if he had been doing are touching the wrong way first ,don’t you think the store should have done something sooner why wait even if they had talk to him why let someone work there ,i think the store is in the wrong really….

  • DariusW

    I see both sides of the issue here. But a person certainly shouldn’t be touched in any manner against their will. Unwanted hugging, especially in a retail situation, should never be tolerated. The fact that there was a history of this behavior, even to the point of charges being filed says a lot. As a business owner, myself, I cringe at the potential for liability if its allowed to continue.

    Rather than “rally,” “protest” and complain, certainly at least one of those people is in a position to give the guy a job. Let him work for them and see if the unwanted hugging and other issues is fine by them. Maybe it will be.

  • @@@@@

    This lady who claims her husband had made comments should take hold of him because his muzzle has slipped! Lady, Control your yapping dog of a husband, Send him to obedience school!


    I have lived in Whitehall area since 1985. When I shopped at Plumb’s, I did not go through Fred’s check out line EVER! I was afraid of him and his bad temper.

  • Shawna

    I understand there’s two sides to every story. But seriously he’s been employed there 39 years and this behavior is just now getting complaints within the last six months? Some people are just nuggets. I for one. I’m a 40 year old woman who hugs everyone given the chance. Yes that means people I have just met at different times over the years. This includes friends of my 21 year old son both male and female. I have for years. Do I now need to worry I’m going to be charged with assault? Again I understand two sides of every story but it just seems weird this behavior is just now being questioned. Has anyone stop to think maybe he’s just showing appreciation for years of customer loyalty? Scary world when it comes to this.

  • todd

    ‘OMG!! he had a bad day! He got mad. Oh no you can’t get mad because its Erratic now a days! We are no longer allowed to be human. Like you don’t get mad or frustrated sometimes you dumb lady. Even the nicest people have a bad day sometimes.

  • Arlene Hudson

    Anyone who has ever been in retail has seen the good, bad and the ugly in humanity. Many folks look down on cashiers and take their bad day out on them. Sometimes, it is hard to shake it off, because it feels personal, especially when you actually care. She may have caught him at the end of trying to shake off one of those occasions. Perhaps, it was HE who needed the hug!!!! And she was so …well, let’s just say void of compassion she didn’t catch on.
    Pressing charges over this is very sad and self-centered of her. Forgiveness would make this all go away, rather than trying to make herself right in this situation.
    This makes me wonder if I will ever give another spontaneous hug again. Are others feeling the same way?

  • Cham

    This man got himself fired. A “hug” did not get him fired. He touched someone inappropriately. If he had touched a man that way while “hugging” him. That man would have laid him out. So all you people that are appalled at his man’s firing go stand in line and he can grope er ” hug” you all day long.

  • froggylog

    A hug is not inappropriate behavior! This woman seems to have taken this to the wrong level. Being in a hick town everyone knows everyone! And I can see how this could have been taken the wrong way!


      Windi….Think about what you are saying? If there were ANY type of threats made would theybe on THIS PAGE THAT AIRED AFTER THIS INTERVIEW? Think about it for a minute….This interview happened after MANY unfortunate incidences occured which prokvoked THIS INTERVIEW. HOw would any threats she coul dof had- be on here AFTER the interview if she was speaking on that BEFORE THIS was aired and THIS thread was created? Again….I read people so QUICK to judge but cant even get times/facts stright.

  • anonymous

    I have followed this story since it came out and it is beyond disturbing.

    First, Fred Civis is 100% in the wrong.

    But what is sad about this is that he had no idea that what he did was wrong and his community has led him to believe that he has done nothing wrong.

    Several woman have complained and posted their stories and they are credible to me.

    Not everyone appreciates Fred’s hugs.

    Some people, who have the right to be respected, and not to be touched without their consent have responded.

    The store counseled Fred.

    He was given corrective discipline and a final warning.

    No one has the right to touch another without their permission.

    It is not only disrespectful, uncaring and lacks regard for another’s feelings, it is against
    the law.

    I wish the store had put him on medical leave. He needed to understand his behavior was inappropriate and to learn to respect corrective direction to keep his job.

    His disability prevented that and the confusing messages from his community made it worse.

    This is so sad for everyone, but the right thing has happened here.

    My best to all.

    I hope he is given probation only or a small fine and that if he is employed again he has a job coach so he understands what appropriate behavior is.

    This is extremely sad.

  • Rose

    I find it ironic that people are so upset about a guy giving hugs getting fired that they resort to death threats. Those people are in serious need of therapy.

  • Mark

    I hate to say this, But this is EXACTLY the reason why I don’t hug women. You just never know what mood many of them are going to be in from 1 moment to the next. I have to really know someone before they get a hug. I try to keep the Pacific Ocean between myself and women like this. Also, I noticed that this man had 39 years with the company. It makes me think that he was obviously nearing retirement and the company found a way of getting rid of him at the last minute.

    • anonymous

      Actually, it has been said that he an intellectual disability so it seems to me that the store kept him a long time even with complaints about inappropriate behavior. I think they did all they could but then it just became too great of a risk because of the number of complaints and the fact that they gave him a final warning and he still could not control himself.

  • Vicki Skinner

    OMGoddess!! “SHE’S” the “Victim”??? Her husband posted Fred should get fired . . . If you’re blaming anyone – blame who’s under your own nose girl!!! HE’s the one that took this to facebook & “victimized” you!! (to ALL that feel they’re “victimized” by someone touching them, I ask you WHO touched YOU inappropriately when YOU were a child? IF you’re being honest, & haven’t buried it too much, I’ll bet there’s some of that in your history!!).

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