The Family Dollar store manager captured in a viral video spraying an alleged shoplifter with Febreze has been fired by his employer.
In an interview with TMZ, Gavyn Edlinger revealed that he had indeed lost his job after the altercation in the parking lot of the Saginaw, Michigan, store. During the incident, which was recorded by a witness and posted on YouTube, Edlinger gets into a heated argument with several women he accuses of stealing from the store. The alleged thieves and Edlinger yell back and forth for about a minute before the situation escalates.
Toward the end of the video, Edlinger becomes extremely agitated, hollering at the women and eventually spraying one of them with Febreze through an open car window. Even when they step out of the vehicle to confront him, saying he “maced” them and would likely be fired from his job, Edlinger continued his rant against the ladies.
You can watch the video here. But be warned, it contains explicit language.
According to Edlinger, he confronted the women after the mother came to the store to pick them up. He says their mother had been unaware that the women had stolen the items, and she later called the store to apologize.
Edlinger told TMZ he was only trying to protect his store. “When I went outside after calling the police to get the license plate, the mother of the car who was driving, she got out of the car. She didn’t even know she was picking them up because she was shoplifting,” he said.
He added that even though Family Dollar policies require employees not to pursue shoplifters, he doesn’t feel his actions were unjustified.
"I would never want to create harm to anyone," said Edlinger. "But at the end of the day, I'm a hardworking guy. I worked my way up to be a salaried store manager with that company. I don't regret it. Girl, you needed some Febreze!"
Edlinger said that Family Dollar only mentioned the video as the reason for terminating his job. He currently has no job offers but says he is hopeful Febreze might choose him for their next commercial.
The video of his argument with the women has gotten over 1 million views since it was uploaded to YoutTube on May 29. And though he may no longer be in the running for manager of the year, Edlinger will likely forever remember the freshly-scented day that made him a YouTube legend.