PORTLAND, Ore. -- A Portland man fired from Home Depot for violating the company’s safety policy will return to work Tuesday after the company gave him his job back.
Dillon Reagan, 32, said he was fired after trying to save a child from a possible kidnapping.
“At the time, the only thing I was thinking about was the child's safety,” said Reagan, who had worked at the Mall 205 Home Depot for four years.
On May 12, Reagan said he was finishing his shift in the store’s tool rental center when things turned chaotic. He said a coworker yelled at him for help after witnessing a violent, domestic dispute in the parking lot.
“I stepped outside and sure enough, there's this lady whose frantic and crying, ‘Somebody help me please! He's stealing my kid, he's kidnapping my child!’”
Reagan and his coworker excused themselves from the store and called police. Reagan said, at the dispatcher's urging, they followed the man on foot until police responded about three blocks away. After giving their statements to police, Reagan said they returned to the store about 10 minutes later.
Reagan said he didn't think much of it until his supervising manager scolded him.
“He said, ‘You did the wrong thing. You should have just gone back to work,’” recalled Reagan.
Reagan said on June 19, he was fired from Home Depot, and chastised again for his actions on May 12. He said it was his second offense at work in a month’s time. He said he was cited for arguing with a coworker a few weeks earlier.
Reagan said if given the chance, he would have responded the same way he did on May 12.
“It was still the right thing to do,” said Reagan. “I was kind of in a catch-22 situation, I’m damned if I do, damned if I don't.
KGW reached out to Home Depot about the case. In a statement, Home Depot said:
“This was a very complex situation, so we're taking another look at the decision. We always want to be certain that we're treating any associate fairly.”
Later, Home Depot issued an updated statement:
“We took a second look at this and have let Mr. Reagan know that we’ve decided to reverse our decision, based on the circumstances. We always do our diligence to make sure associates are treated fairly, which we’ve done in this case.”
When asked if he would work for Home Depot again, Reagan initially responded, “Honestly, at this point, no.”
After some consideration, Reagan decided to take them up on their offer to restore his job with back-pay.
"Going back to work at Home Depot may not be ideal and I am still hesitant and wary about being back, but I think it's the best choice, right now,” he said.
Reagan added that he enjoyed working with the people in his department and helping customers with projects.