WAREHAM — Wareham Police are asking for the public's help in identifying three shoplifting suspects that allegedly assaulted an elderly Walmart employee and dragged him with their car.

Wareham Police responded to the Walmart on Cranberry Highway at about 6 p.m. on Thursday for what was initially reported as a hit and run. The involved vehicle was reported as a blue Honda sedan that was last seen traveling east on Cranberry Highway.

Upon arrival at the scene, police found a 76-year-old male Walmart employee on the pavement being tended to by bystanders.

During the investigation, police discovered that the elderly man had tried to stop three male suspects that were believed to be shoplifting in the store.

Video surveillance showed the suspects' vehicle parked near a fire exit with one occupant in the car. The video showed two suspects hurriedly leaving the store through the fire exit with a shopping cart filled with merchandise.

After trying to load up the car with the stolen goods, the 76-year-old employee confronted the suspects and tried to stop them. The car began to pull away from the store, dragging the elderly man several feet before he fell to the ground.

The victim was able to get up, and again tried to stop the suspects. However, one of the male suspects struck the man with a shopping cart, knocking him to the ground again.

The suspects fled in the vehicle before police arrived.

The victim was transported to Tobey Hospital in Wareham where he was treated and released for his injuries.

During the struggle, the elderly victim pulled a windshield wiper from the car. The wiper was collected by police as evidence. There was no license plate on the vehicle.

Wareham Police detectives are actively investigating the incident and are asking the public's help in identifying the suspects. Acting Chief of Police John Walcek said in a statement, “Identifying and arresting these subjects is a top priority, because in addition to stealing from a business in Wareham, they injured, and very easily could have killed someone with their desperate and reckless actions to flee the area. I would ask everyone to view the photos of the suspects, the suspect vehicle and help us apprehend these criminals. I am confident with the public’s help that will happen.”

If anyone has information regarding the suspects' identities or their whereabouts, they are asked to contact Wareham Police at 508-295-1212, or Text-A-Tip by texting 274637 and using the keyword "WarehamPD" to begin your message. A tip can also be submitted by clicking a link on the Wareham Police Department's website.