Police in California have released video of a suspect who dumped a man out of his wheelchair at a Target store earlier this month after the victim allegedly challenged the suspect’s partner for parking an SUV in an accessible spot outside the store.
The suspect can be seen tipping the paraplegic victim out of his chair in security footage released by the Pleasant Hill Police Department. The video was captured on Saturday, Jan. 11 at 9:20 p.m.
Philip Kinstler, 52, says the dispute started in the parking lot of a Target store in San Ramon, Calif. Kinstler, who has used a wheelchair for 30 years, pulled into the parking lot and saw a woman sitting in an SUV parked in an accessible parking spot. He got out of his accessible van and tapped on her window to confront her about the spot.
“I thought I would ask her kindly if they could not park there again, in the handicap spot,” he told the Washington Post on Friday.
Kinstler then went into the store to ask staff to call police, Sgt. Ron Priebe told NBC News.
Police say the woman’s partner approached Kinstler in the store and demanded he apologize for “scaring” her. When Kinstler refused, the suspect tried to roll his wheelchair out to the parking lot to force the apology, police said.
Video released by police shows the suspect moving the victim’s wheelchair, then tilting it to the side, causing the victim to fall out. There is no audio included with the video.
Jimmie Tiger, 32, was arrested in connection with the incident on Jan. 19, according to police. He was apprehended under an arrest warrant for attempted kidnapping, assault by means likely to produce great bodily injury and a special allegation of great bodily injury, police said in a news release.
“Mr. Tiger attempted to forcibly wheel the victim out of the store against his will, and when the victim resisted, Mr. Tiger violently lifted the victim’s wheelchair from the side, throwing the victim down onto the floor,” police said in the news release.
Kinstler says he was in “shock” after he fell out of the chair.
“I looked down at my wrist and it was all askew, and then the pain hit and I thought, ‘My life is over,'” he told the Post. As of this writing, the extent of Kinstler’s injuries is unclear.
Kinstler says he lives alone and needs his hands to do everything because he is paralyzed from the mid-chest down.
“This is like the worst thing he could have possibly done to me,” Kinstler said. “If someone had hired him to do this to me, he could not have done a better job.”
The video does not show what happened next. However, police say witnesses stepped in to help Kinstler. They also provided information that helped police identify the suspect from his licence plate.
A spokesperson for Target said a security guard called police immediately after the dispute.
Tiger has pleaded not guilty to the charges and has been released on $180,000 bail, according to the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office.