Monday, July 22, 2024
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Actor Angie Harmon sues Instacart and its delivery driver for fatally shooting her dog

Actor Angie Harmon has filed a lawsuit against Instacart and one of its former shoppers who fatally shot her dog in March while delivering groceries at her North Carolina home.

The lawsuit filed late last week in Mecklenburg County seeks to hold the shopper and Instacart liable for accusations of trespassing, gross negligence, emotional distress and invasion of privacy, among other allegations. It accuses Instacart of engaging in negligent hiring, supervision, retention and misrepresentation. The suit seeks monetary damages, to be determined at trial.

Instacart says the shopper has since been permanently banned from its platform.

Harmon is known for her work on TV shows including “Law & Order” and “Rizolli & Isles.” She told “Good Morning America” in an interview that aired Wednesday that it was “so unfathomable to think that there is somebody in your front driveway that just fired a gun.”

“I think Instacart is beyond responsible for all of this,” Harmon said in the interview. “This didn’t have to happen.” 

According to the complaint, Harmon ordered an Instacart groceries delivery from a Charlotte store on March 30. The Instacart app showed a shopper named Merle with a profile photo of an older woman, with whom Harmon believed she was exchanging text messages about her order, the lawsuit says.

Later that day, Harmon was upstairs filling her squirrel feeders when a “tall and intimidating younger man,” not an older woman, showed up to deliver the groceries, the lawsuit says.

Harmon said she heard a gunshot sound and rushed outside. She found her dog, Oliver, had been shot, and saw the delivery person putting a gun into the front of his pants, according to the suit. Her teenage daughters, who had already been outside, were “in distress,” it says. The dog died at the veterinarian’s office.

The shopper told police that he shot the dog after it attacked him, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department told news outlets, adding that they did not pursue criminal charges.

In an Instagram post last month about the encounter, Harmon wrote that the shopper “did not have a scratch or bite on him nor were his pants torn.”

Instacart says it immediately suspended the shopper after receiving the report about the shooting, then later removed him permanently. The company says it runs comprehensive background checks on shoppers, prohibits them from carrying weapons and has anti-fraud measures that include periodically requiring them to take a photo of themselves to ensure the person shopping matches their photo on file.

“Our hearts continue to be with Ms. Harmon and her family following this disturbing incident,” Instacart said in a statement. “While we cannot comment on pending litigation, we have no tolerance for violence of any kind, and the shopper account has been permanently deactivated from our platform.”

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