Man banned from Walmart: Retailer says Joe Cantrell threatened employee

SAN TAN VALLEY, AZ - Walmart is now speaking out, saying a man is banned from their San Tan Valley location because he threatened an employee.

The incident happened on Dec. 2 at the retailer's location near North Gary Road and Hunt Highway.

Joe Cantrell said he went to Walmart to buy Christmas ornaments for his family tree, but the shopping trip turned more serious after he tried to ad match.

When an employee told him no, Cantrell said he complained to a manager.

According to an incident report released Tuesday from Pinal County Sheriff's Office, Cantrell physically threatened the cashier as they awaited the store manager. He allegedly used several profanities toward the employee, leaving another customer behind him "frightened".

One worker told PCSO he had previous encounters with Cantrell, who had attempted in the past to fraudulently ad match items.

Four days later, when Cantrell went back to that same Walmart, PCSO deputies handcuffed and escorted him out of the store.

Walmart says they kicked him out because of the threat Cantrell had made to the employee during his Dec. 2 visit.

"I have never threatened anybody in my life because I have too much to lose. My kids mean the world to me. If I threaten somebody that puts my family in jeopardy," said Cantrell.

Walmart released the following statement to ABC15 on Tuesday:

The safety of our associates and customers is our top priority, and we find threats of violence unacceptable. This customer threatened our associate with bodily harm. Out of abundance of caution, local law enforcement was contacted. Due to continuous threats of violence, the customer is no longer welcome at the store.

ABC15 talked with several former Walmart employees who knew Cantrell.

Many said Cantrell often tried to use expired ads to price match and the company would often make exceptions for him.

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