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ORC 3-13-15




Male career criminal - suitcase stuffer busted hitting Macy's downtown Seattle, Ballard Fred Meyer and Shoreline Sears  Police say Andersson, 46,  stole $104 in fragrances from Macy's in October, and in December, took an empty suitcase at a Fred Meyer store, filled it with jeans, and left the store with the items worth about $835. Also in December, police say a loss prevention officer at the Shoreline Sears saw Andersson select a rolling suitcase before going to the shoe department, trying on a pair of $120 shoes, and them placing them in the suitcase. Court documents say Andersson then went to the men's department where he put a stack of 25 pairs of Levis jeans into the suitcase and then left the building. He was then stopped by employees. While in the store's loss prevention office, a store sales associate recognized Andersson as the same man who committed a similar theft the day before involving a suitcase and jeans, police said. The loss prevention manager reviewed the previous day's surveillance video and found the theft. The merchandise fro both Sears thefts totaled $3,600. He was charged with organized retail theft earlier this month.

Belk's Loss Prevention in Dothan, AL nab $2,700 shoplifter - identity thief
Dothan police recently arrested a 36-year-old woman on a felony charge alleging she stole $2,700 worth of merchandise from the Belk's department store. According to a Dothan police statement, Victoria Smith was arrested and charged with felony first-degree theft of property. Police had responded to the 900 block of Commons Drive to a shoplifting complaint at Belk's department store. Police were given a description of the suspect and took her into custody as she was leaving the store. Police found her in possession of $2,700 worth of stolen merchandise. Court records show police also charged Smith with felony identity theft.

4 Michigan ORC thieves arrested in multi-city Television thefts
Four Inkster residents have been charged with shoplifting and are suspected of being involved in shoplifting ring that struck stores in Westland, Canton, Garden City and Dearborn. Westland Police began investigating after five suspects entered Kmart, 165 S. Wayne Road, on March 1 and were reported to have stolen four televisions. After investigation, detectives were able to obtain information on the suspects resulting in a search warrant being executed in Inkster. Two of the stolen televisions were reported to have been recovered from that location. Officers arrested four of five suspects, all of whom share a home in Inkster, for retail fraud. Police report that further investigation led to the recovery of two additional televisions from local pawn shops. According to police, the investigation found that the suspects were involved in a retail fraud ring that was targeting local area stores in not only Westland but the surrounding communities of Canton, Dearborn and Garden City. Police are continuing to investigation.

Home Depot employee in Austin, TX charged with stealing nearly $10K of merchandise  A woman working at a Home Depot store in Northwest Austin is charged with stealing nearly $10,000 from the company. Police say 28-year-old Megan Phillips collected the money between May and August of last year by performing fraudulent return transactions, according to an arrest affidavit. The company's corporate office alerted the store to the problem after they found Phillips hand-entered several returns during a 30-day period, court documents show. Surveillance video showed Phillips stored several UPC codes on her cellphone, the affidavit said, then transcribed those numbers onto a piece of paper. The store says she then entered the UPC numbers into her register and issued fraudulent returns.

Rite Aid and Bellingham, WA Police working together to stop refund fraud
Some criminals are willing to go through any means to an end, even digging through trash. Bellingham police discovered a new crime involving receipts stolen from trash cans. Bellingham Police Lt. Bob Vander Yacht said thieves go through trash outside of local stores, grab receipts, and make note of the items listed and their codes. They then enter the stores, find matching items, and use the receipts to "return" them at the customer service desk. The first case was discovered after a shoplifting event at a Rite Aid on Telegraph Road. One suspect was apprehended, but later, a Rite Aid employee called the police to report they'd discovered a backpack believed belonged to a woman who had been with the suspect. "[In the backpack was] some paraphernalia related to narcotics and also this large collection of receipts from multiple businesses and a series of handwritten notes related to the receipts," Vander Yacht said. Receipts in the backpack found in Rite Aid were from Rite Aid, Lowe's, Home Depot, Fred Meyer and other stores nearby.

ORC 3-13-15
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