Pharmacist Fired for Self Defense Loses Appeal ~ Video

By Dean Weingarten

Jeremy Hoven Self Defense Shooting
Jeremy Hoven Self Defense Shooting
Dean Weingarten
Dean Weingarten

Arizona – -(Ammoland.com)- Jeremy Hoven is a pharmacist who worked at Walgreens in Benton Township, Michigan.

He had complained about security at the store after a robbery in 2007, and had obtained a concealed carry permit.   In 2011, at 4:30 a.m. on May 8th, he defended himself against armed robbers who had entered the store, taken a manager hostage, and who had tried to shoot him.   It was all captured on a dramatic video, below.

A local police Lt. said that he would have done the same thing.  From abcnews.go.com:

Township police Lt. Delman Lange, after reviewing surveillance video, told the local paper, “If it was me, I would have done the same thing.”

Eight days later, Hoven was fired from his $150,000 a year job at Walgreens.  Four months after being fired, in September of 2011, he filed a wrongful employment lawsuit, contending that Walgreens had violated his right to self defense.

Fast foward nearly three years.   Jeremy Hoven has lost the initial court case (it was a federal lawsuit), and appealed to the Sixth Circuit.   On 2 June, 2014, Sixth Circuit Judge Karen Nelson Moore ruled against him and in favor of Walgreens.

From modernmedicine.com:

Hoven filed a lawsuit against Walgreens claiming his firing violated his self-defense rights and his rights to carry a concealed weapon. The court disagreed, citing Hoven’s status as an at-will employee who could be fired at any time, for any reason.

While I think that Walgreens' policy is short sighted and counterproductive, and while I think Jeremy Hoven did the right thing, I also believe the court made the correct decision.   Private companies, just like private individuals, have the right to do stupid things.   Jeremy Hoven was an at-will employee.   As stated above, that means that his employer could fire him at any time, for any reason.   Any reason, even if the reason penalizes a man who did what most believe was something that may well have saved lives.   Many people called Hoven a hero.

When you agree to work without a contract, you can be fired at any time.   You can also quit at any time.   It is an important freedom that applies to everyone.   No doubt the $150,000 per year salary had something to do with his acceptance.   It is not unusual for professionals to work “at-will”.   It is unusual for companies to fire them for protecting themselves.

Walgreens had the right to fire Jeremy Hoven for any reason it wants.   Everyone else has the right to shop, or refuse to shop, at Walgreens for any reason that they choose.

c2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included. Link to Gun Watch

About Dean Weingarten;

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

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fsilberEricfreewillJinete LargoLone Ranger Recent comment authors
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fsilber
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fsilber

Would it be feasible to organize a boycott of that specific store? I don’t think a nationwide boycott would work — as there are too many chains with that policy. However, if we could put that one store out of business it would send a message: “You fire an employee for defending his life — we fire the store that fired him.”

Eric
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Eric

Mr Hoven should file a complaint about a hostile work enviroment and Walgreens failed to protect him.

freewill
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freewill

i will not ever spend one dime in walgreens. and i encourage every body to boycotte these fools. if we dont stand together as one, we’ll only be helping domestic enemies that dont believe in self defense.

Jinete Largo
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Jinete Largo

It’s NOT TRUE that, “Walgreens had the right to fire Jeremy Hoven for any reason it wants.” For instance they can’t fire him for being confined to a wheel chair. They can’t fire him for being Hispanic. They can’t fire him for being Black. They can’t fire him for being Asian. They can’t fire him because he is really a gal dressed in mens clothing. They can’t fire him for being attracted to people of the same sex as himself. They can’t fire him because he believes in God or Allah or any religion . . . or not. They… Read more »

Jinete Largo
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Jinete Largo

Famously, you can’t shout, “FIRE!” in a crowded theater when there is no fire and claim it’s your First Amendment Right to do so. This means simply that you may not endanger another persons life, even a lowly employee’s life. It seems especially heinous when you consider that Walgreens and this Court are ignoring an employees very right to be alive over a political view point and for the pursuit of PROFIT! It’s just plain stupid to punish anyone for saving lives! If you do business with Walgreens then you obviously agree with them about the importance of money and… Read more »

Lone Ranger
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Lone Ranger

Just think if they won’t protect their employees, doubt they would protect a customer either. Guess they thinks it’s cheaper to hire a clean up crew after people are killed,than pay to install serurity to protect their employees.

james
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james

Understand ‘right to work’ laws and live in NC. I work for State of NC at university and also have a p/t job in retail. Both companies have HR policies in place that must be followed before somebody is terminated, almost impossible to fire somebody unless theft or physical violence on the job or threats of same to others has happened. Can an employer ignore their HR policies that they have been following for years and just terminate a worker? For example, I am always late, I get warnings, sitdown with boss, written warnings, three times and then final warning,… Read more »

Mike the Limey
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Mike the Limey

The judge is right on this but Walgreen’s “no gun” policy means they’ll never see a single cent from me.

teebonicus
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teebonicus

This decision is an unfortunate side-effect of the “Right to Work” model of labor law.

Also unfortunate is that the judge is absolutely correct. Under such regimes, both the employer and employee can terminate their relationship without cause, simply be cause they want to.

The other extreme is the “union shop” model, which has many more unintended bad consequences attached thereunto.

On balance, the former is much more in line with liberty than the latter, which is aligned with counterfeit entitlements.

ray hampton
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ray hampton

I find this story a tad stupid, GUN OWNERS do have their rights too and we [the people ] need to sent a stronger message to the white house and other places

Pete
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Pete

And Walgreens joins the list! This is great, an easy way to identify companies that use unconstitutional practices. The buck doesn’t stop there anymore…

TSgt B
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TSgt B

Haven’t been in a Walgreen’s since I heard about this, and never will be again. Not even to take a pee in the parking lot.

jamie
Guest
jamie

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average Pharmacist salary is $106,410 annually. The highest-paid Pharmacists earn more than $131,440 per year, and even the lowest-paid Pharmacists are paid $77,390. So bob if you know pharmacist who are only making 50k a year then you need to tell them to look elsewhere. At least he is alive and can look for another job. You can replace your job, but not your life.

Dale
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Dale

Dean, I also would disagree with the statement “Private companies…have the right to do stupid things.” Philisophically I agree but, that is not reality today. Just ask any company that wants to allow smoking in thier place of business. I say make the liberals lay in the bed they have made.

Proud Dad
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Proud Dad

My daughter was barely accepted into college with a 3.85 GPA; then barely into grad school where they review 4000 applicants to accept 200. She spent over $300K in tuition and had 7yrs of forgone income. She is now a Doctor of Pharmacy and immediately raced to the top of her profession; passing up all the 50yr olds.

Yes, she makes $160K a year. Yes, she teaches and over-rides medical doctors on patient care. She also counts pills.

There is a reason jealousy is one of the 10 commandments.

Watchdogman
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Watchdogman

Maybe Walgreens will notice that their bottom line is reaching the top line. NO sales no profits.

This company should provide security in and around the pharmacy. If you have to provide your own security and suffer if you act to prevent serious problems either quit that company! Walgreens is a dying corporation anyway.

Carl Stevenson
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Carl Stevenson

Yes, corporations should have the right to do stupid things … Right up to the point where it violates their employees’ natural, a God-given, constitutionally protected rights (like self-defense, keeping and bearing arms).
The court got it wrong (again). The case would have gone the other way if he had been a homosexual, Muslim, abortion activist, etc. The rights protected by the 2nd Amendment are pretty much the only ones our leftist courts are unwilling to protect.

TEX
Guest
TEX

150K ? Damn,I’m gonna become a pill counter !

Jeff
Guest
Jeff

My mother was making $52 per hour before she passed 6 years ago. 50k a year as part time maybe lol

Eric
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Eric

Better unemployed then dead, but I wont be shopping at Walgreens , neither should you.

bob
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bob

Just fyi, I know of NO Pharmacist that makes anywhere CLOSE to 150k/yr.
MAYBE 50k, but DEF not 150.

Geoff
Guest
Geoff

OTOH, if he was not armed and was killed, his next of kin could sue Walgreens and probably win.