COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Shoppers in central Ohio are checking their receipts, following reports that Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost sued Dollar General and Family Dollar for what he calls “deceptive” pricing practices.
Wendy Jester said she was shopping at a Columbus AutoZone Saturday with her boyfriend when she noticed they were charged more for a bottle of power steering fluid than what was displayed on the shelf.
“I’m paying attention to every little dollar I have,” said Jester, who lives on a fixed income.
The product was priced at $10.99 on the shelf but rang up for $12.99, Jester said. Her boyfriend told the cashier about it, but the cashier did not fix the issue.
Jester had seen NBC4’s reporting that other retailers had been charging customers amounts higher than display prices on a widespread basis.
“If you show me that that’s the real price, yeah. Yeah. I’ll pay it, or I won’t. But give me that choice,” she said. “Any time I see it done, I’m going to take a picture, and I’m going to say something.”
Yost’s office provided NBC4 with its collection of consumer complaints against AutoZone. Of the 22 complaints dating back to 2014, none were similar to that of Jester.
The auto parts retailer paid a $47,500 settlement in 2016 to the State of New Jersey for charging above display prices. The settlement also included a consent decree requiring frequent pricing audits and public reports at New Jersey AutoZone stores.
Yost’s office encouraged Jester, or any consumer who is charged a higher price than what they see on a store shelf, to report the issue to Ohioprotects.org or 800-282-0515.
NBC4 reached out to a corporate spokesman for AutoZone to see if Jester’s pricing issue was an isolated mistake or part of a larger problem. He has not responded.