AUSTIN COUNTY, Texas - "There is no reason, why as of Monday morning, no one is under arrest for what happened to sister Betty."
On Monday, community activists Quanell X and Dr. Candice Matthews stood with 65-year-old Betty Smith and her family, along with a local pastor on Monday afternoon.
They demanded justice after employees at Lindemann Grocery Store off of SH 159 locked Smith in the store and refused to let her leave after she found a $50 bill on the floor.
"This grandmother, this beautiful elderly Black woman who is suffering and fighting cancer, did nothing wrong in that store," Quanell X said.
Smith says the store manager told her she couldn't leave with the money, because it may have belonged to someone else. The fight over the money escalated, and at one point Smith was put in a choke hold, one employee snatched the money from her hand, and she claims one of the women used racial slurs.
Smith's family members came to the store, which led to officers arriving and placing them in cuffs, but Smith says the officer only spoke with the store employees, and never took any statements from her or her family.
The Austin County Sheriff's Department forwarded the case to the district attorney's office, DA Travis Koehn sent FOX 26 the following statement:
"The Austin County District Attorney's Office has received offense reports, witness statements, and extensive video evidence from the Austin County Sheriff's Office investigation concerning the January 16, 2023, incident at Lindemann Store. The District Attorney's Office is carefully reviewing this matter, as we do with all investigations forwarded by law enforcement. This remains an ongoing investigation. The office will continue to request and review any additional evidence that may be relevant to charging decisions in this incident. When this matter is completed, the Austin County District Attorney's Office will issue a press release to notify the public regarding the outcome."
All three employees involved have been fired, the store owner also apologized, and offered to pay the bail for Smith's daughter and told her she could have the $50 she found, but Smith declined. She says what she wants is to see the employees who locked her in the store and attacked her arrested.