Lawsuit Alleges Walmart Was Tipped Off About Elwyn Crocker While He Worked As Santa

A lawsuit alleges that Walmart was made aware of the misdeeds and pedophilic tendencies of Elwyn Crocker Sr, the man facing the death penalty in Effingham County for the death of his two children, but failed to take action.

The suit was filed against Walmart Inc. and Elwyn Crocker Sr. in Effingham County Superior Court but has since been moved to federal court.

Elwyn Crocker Sr. and four others are facing murder charges for the deaths of his two children. Deputies with the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office visited the Crocker home on Rose Bud Place in Guyton for a welfare check on a young girl back in December 2018. Ultimately, authorities found two teenage children – Elwyn John Crocker, Jr. and Mary Frances Crocker – buried in the backyard with a third found in the bathroom. Elwyn had been missing for more than two years. Authorities discovered the children were kept in dog kennels, naked and deprived of nourishment and other basic care.

Elwyn Crocker Sr. worked at the Walmart location as a maintenance man from 2015 to 2018, when he was arrested for murder. During that time, he also worked as the store Easter Bunny and Santa Claus.

The suit, filed by the Administrator of the Estate of Mary Frances Crocker, contends that staff at the Rincon Walmart in Effingham County was notified by individuals about Crocker’s ‘pedophilic propensities’ but staff failed to follow store policies or make reports to law enforcement.

Warning: Text of quotes from the court filings is disturbing and graphic. 

Court filings claim that Elwyn Crocker Sr. admitted to a cellmate that he was a “child rapist,” “did not wear condoms,” “enjoyed playing Santa because he could touch children,” and “that he molested children.” 

More importantly, the lawsuit claims that the Walmart store manager in Rincon was made aware of statements made by Crocker as early as December 2017. At the time, a fellow employee reportedly told the store manager that Crocker was a pedophile and that Crocker Sr. told him that he wanted to continue to be Santa Claus because he received sexual gratification from having little children sit on his lap. The suit says Walmart was notified again in the summer of 2018 of ‘pedophilic propensities’ and did nothing.

Even after these reports, Walmart continued to advertise the availability of Santa Claus, played by Crocker Sr., at the Rincon Walmart in 2017 and 2018.

“On numerous occasions after Walmart was alerted to the fact that Crocker Sr. was an admitted pedophile, preying on children at its Rincon store, Crocker Sr. brought his daughter Mary to the store. Mary, in this status, was there to shop and she was owed a duty of care under the law of Georgia as a business invitee to keep the premises safe, i.e. keep pedophiles away from Mary. She was disheveled, withdrawn, gaunt, clearly underfed. Given what Walmart management knew about Crocker Sr., Walmart owed a duty, pursuant to Georgia law and its internal policies, to report to law enforcement and upper management outside of the store. Instead, Walmart did nothing.”

  • Walmart managers did not follow the Code of Conduct by reporting pedophilic behavior to police
  • Walmart should have investigated the reports made about Crocker Sr. for engaging in acts of admitted sexual gratification with small children
  • Walmart kept a photo of Crocker dressed as Santa Claus on its website, even after his arrest and well into 2023.
  • Georgia statutes require mandatory reporting of suspected pedophilia in the interest of protecting children
  • Walmart owed an additional duty to keep Mary away from her father on its premises and warn law enforcement authorities.

The suit asks the court to award damages to the estate of Mary Frances Crocker ‘for the unspeakable mental and physical pain and suffering Mary experienced during the last 11 months of her life (the time between when the pedophilia of its employee was reported to Walmart by a co-worker and Mary’s death).

“By failing to follow its mandatory reporting duties and internal reporting policies, Walmart led to eleven more months of torture for Mary Crocker and her death in October 2018…If Walmart had obeyed its internal policies and Georgia law, it would have prevented Mary Crocker’s death. Therefore, Walmart is similarly liable for Mary’s death.”

The case remains open and pending in U.S. District Court.

Crocker’s criminal case is also still pending. No future court dates are currently set.

Jessica Szilagyi

Jessica Szilagyi is Publisher of TGV News. She focuses primarily on state and local politics as well as issues in law enforcement and corrections. She has a background in Political Science with a focus in local government and has a Master of Public Administration from the University of Georgia.

Jessica is a "Like It Or Not" contributor for Fox5 in Atlanta and co-creator of of the Peabody Award-nominated podcast 'Prison Town.'

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