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Veteran with disabilities sues store after he and his service dog kicked out, told to "go occupy Wall Street"

P8010053_thumb By Tamara | October 22, 2012 | Comments (14)

Disabled War Vet sues store after he and his service dog kicked out, told to "go occupy Wall Street"
Adan served with the Army's 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery Regiment, which was involved in the search for - and capture of - Saddam Hussein Photo: Twitter

A war veteran with disabilities is claiming that the owner and employees at a mattress store in San Antonio, Texas discriminated against him and his service dog, forcing him out of the store.

Disabled War Vet sues store after he and his service dog kicked out, told to "go occupy Wall Street"Adan Gallegos is suing Billy Bob's Beds in San Antonio Federal Court.

Adan claims the store's president, William Gholson, kicked him and his service dog Bootz out of the store, even though Bootz was clearly identified as a service animal. According to the complaint filed, the man persisted in removing Adan from the store "in spite of Bootz wearing an identifying service-dog vest and Mr. Gallegos verbally informing Gohlson that Bootz is a service animal,".

Furthermore, "store employees continued the harassment and ridicule after Mr. Gallegos left the building." Adan claims that Gholson called the police on him and that after he had exited the store employees followed after him and told him to remove his Wounded Warrior clothing and "go occupy Wall Street."

Disabled War Vet sues store after he and his service dog kicked out, told to "go occupy Wall Street"While serving overseas, Adan served with the Army's 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery Regiment, which was involved in the search for - and capture of - Saddam Hussein. Adan is 70% disabled and suffers from depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Bootz helps him by monitoring his behavior and alerting Adan if he is highly stressed or showing signs of a panic attack. The dog also helps remind him to take his medications.

Disabled War Vet sues store after he and his service dog kicked out, told to "go occupy Wall Street"Adan says that on the day of the incident, he entered the store with a family member to pick up a previously purchased mattress. Bootz was leashed, never jumped on any furniture, and under control during the entire visit. But, the fact that Bootz was a registered service animal did not sway the owner. The complaint states, "Gholson stated he did not care if the dog was a service animal. Gholson indicated that Mr. Gallegos was in Gholson's place of business and no one could make him do anything in his own building." 

Ghoulson has not released a statement regarding the incident.

Adan is seeking punitive damages for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act and civil rights violations and is represented by Denette Vaughn with Disability Rights Texas.

Disabled War Vet sues store after he and his service dog kicked out, told to "go occupy Wall Street"




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Comments on this Article

I am sorry to read that some businesses are still not allowing service dogs into their establishments. I think Billy Bob needs a lawsuit to help him remember to be kind to the next service dog that wants to come in with its owner.
Even though I hate for businesses to go out of business, I do hope Billy Bob does. I was planning to go back to buy a twin bed, after having purchased a couple of mattresses. I will not go back because of his treatment to this man who has serviced his country. BAD BOY Billy Bob.
@dan hetland: you don't need to pay huge money for a service dog. my dog's no certified wossname - he's just a border collie my friend (who still runs the pet rescue we started) gave me as a pup so the farmer wouldn't dispatch him after the mother rejected him at 2wks. he's *brilliant*. he can't do my income taxes (keeps slipping the decimal) and his coffee sucks but he opens and closes doors for me (house, cupboard, fridge); picks stuff up and either gives it to me or drops it in a box; pulls off my socks; gets me a juice or water bottle from the downstairs fridge; and flushes the toilet. those are the useful tricks - i won't get into the tricks he does just for amusement (such as take a bow or stand up and hop around on his back legs like a kangaroo). all you need is a mature, stable dog that nobody else wants; a clicker; a variety of treats ("treat", for my dog, can be as big as bits of hot dog or dried beef lung or boiled egg or as small as sniffing my bacon-grease-scented fingers, as he's both food- and sniff- driven); and patience. oh - premium diet is important: it's cheaper for me to feed my dog from the reduced bin at the grocery store meat dept than from a bag.
Adan, Thank you for your service to our Nation. I hope you were able to secure a refund and purchase your mattress elsewhere, as it would have to add insult to injury to purchase anything from this cretin after the way you were mistreated. Best of luck in your lawsuit against this ass, he needs to be made an example of that you don't treat people in general, but especially veterans, this way. I am disabled myself, but I don't have a service dog right now, though I would love to have one, my finances won't permit it. Don't settle with this guy, make him pay.
It's alright people, lol, by the time the media is done with this guy, he's gonna be out of business anyway.
where but for the grace you could be in his place billy boy and william gholson you are a disgrace!!!!
Thanks to you for your service and to Bootz for his service!! No Thanks to Billy Bob's of San Antonio !!
these people don't deserve a sucessful business, i too am glad they were named and shamed. To treat a combat veteran, or ANY veteran, like this is disgusting. I'm glad Adan is standing up for himself.. Thank you for your service!
Good grief Charlie Brown. Though I don't live in the US, I think there are many who appreciate the naming of the store, it's president and the outing of inappropriate behaviors of the store's staff. I'd fire the lot of them. Grown adults do not require "sensitivity" training in this instance. Sadly, laws have to be made for people to do the right thing - laws that were outrightly ignored in this instance. Good on Aden for outing this store/people and shedding light on this most unfortunate incident. (I certainly hope they got their money and bought their mattress elsewhere!). And people wonder why I prefer the company of my dog Baxter! Wonder no more! ox
He should have brought his dog back in there and let it poop on the floor. If the guy didn't want the dog in there, he should have REALLY given him a reason not to! (and yes, this is all in jest, the owner is a real jerk).
Unbelievable. So sorry this happened to Aden and Bootz. Thank you for your service. Hope you can win this case. God Bless you and your family. I pray this won't happen to you or any other service member again. Thank you for your service.
What is the matter with the ignorant business owner. It so difficult 2 understand that any American familiar with the veterans in this country would treat a veteran & his service animal so terribly. Shame on him, someone like that needs 2 B sentenced 2 some education! & they wonder why these veterans go crazy & start shooting anybody!!
the name "billy bob" should've been a warning and if that wasn't enough, his name is "ghoulson", literally, "son of a grave robber". this PoS clearly takes pride in being the lowest of the low.
Thank you for your service shame on this man of the owner of the mattress store. this man fought for you and this how you repay him?
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