An elderly man is recovering after an attack in the parking lot of a Kroger grocery store in Union City.
Police said the man was trying to do the right thing when he was attacked by a Kroger manager who has since been fired.
Jack Hinesley, former assistant manager at the Kroger on Jonesboro Road, was charged with battery Wednesday. Police said he attacked 72-year-old John Young and slammed his head into the parking lot pavement.
Over the last few weeks, Young has parked his van in the Kroger lot to hand out food.
“Sometimes he fills up his truck two or three times and just goes out in search of folks who are needy,” witness Waliakbar Muhammad said. “He said that just one day, he got the inspiration that he needed to be feeding the hungry.”
Muhammad said Hinesley and a store security guard mistakenly believed Young was actually selling the food.
“They fail to recognize, believe and understand that a person can have a good heart and be willing to just give away some food,” he told Channel 2’s Diana Davis.
He showed Davis a picture of Young’s bloody head shortly after the attack.
Kroger sent a statement saying, “What happened to Mr. Young was a terrible thing. This never should have happened, and we deeply regret that it did. After an internal investigation, we have decided to terminate Mr. Hinesley’s employment with Kroger. We hope Mr. Young recovers quickly from the injuries he suffered.”