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ORC 2-15-16




Alton, IL: Three Plead Guilty in Federal Court to Theft Ring;
Profits going to Ringleader in Mexico
Three men have pleaded guilty in connection with a major theft ring based in Madison County. The suspects were charged in federal court and admitted to their roles in using stolen credit card information from individuals and businesses to purchase merchandise, sell it below cost, and send the money to the ringleader in Mexico. Pleading guilty to participating in a stolen property ring are 58-year-old James Litchfield, owner of Big Jim's Autorama in Madison, his brother 37-year-old Ryan Litchfield of O'Fallon, Missouri, and 55-year-old Benedict Pellerito of Troy, Missouri. All three will be sentenced in June. Federal authorities allege the men worked with another suspect in the case, 42 year old Jason Parmeley of O'Fallon, Missouri, to use the stolen credit account information to purchase items from places like Lowe's, Home Depot, Menard's and rental stores. The items would then be sold for less, some through retail outlets and other items were sold on line. Authorities say some of the profits were then wired electronically to Parmeley who was in Mexico at the time. He has since been extradited to the U.S. and is in federal custody in Alabama on unrelated charges. Trial for the remaining defendants in the case is schedule for April 18.

Police warn about organized retail crime
Police are warning New Hampshire retailers about the new ways criminals are targeting stores and customers. Investigators said criminals are using credit card skimmers and other technology in what police call organized retail crime. "It's essentially shoplifting," Tilton Police Chief Robert Cormier said. "And it's essentially crossing into identity theft cases and other sorts of compromises on credit card information phone scams. It's all starting to interconnect now." Police held a seminar Friday on how retailers can protect themselves from being victims. "What we're trying to do is create awareness that it's out there, where we're seeing it and also keep the public informed, and educate the public, as well, to be a little bit diligent," Cormier said.

DeWitt, NY: Police trying to ID suspects in $4,600 JC Penney theft
DeWitt Police are trying to identify two suspects who they believe worked with others to steal $4,661 in merchandise from the JC Penney store at ShoppingTown Mall. Police say four males - including two who were caught on camera - entered the store on Feb. 1 around 4:19 p.m. According to police, one suspect who was wearing a Superman sweatshirt on camera went into a fitting room. A three other men reportedly grabbed merchandise and handed it to the suspect in the fitting room. All four were then reportedly seen running out of the store with large, white bags full of merchandise.

Hialeah, FL: Cell Phone/ electronics Thieves seen on surveillance video at 3 stores
Four men were caught on camera carrying out three smash-and-grab robberies across Hialeah over the weekend, hauling away thousands of dollars worth of cellphones and other electronic equipment from three stores. A sledgehammer appears to be the destructive weapon in each case.

Riverhead, NY: Two Women hit J. Crew in Tanger Outlets for $1,200 in merchandise
Two women removed $1,221 worth of women's clothing from the J. Crew store at Tanger Outlets about noon last Thursday and fled the area, police said. A store manager told police that she first noticed the items were missing about 1:30 p.m. and then reviewed the surveillance camera footage and saw the women stealing 17 pink shirts, 10 blue shirts and 10 pink and white shirts, according to police.

Lake Havasu, AZ: Woman, 24, arrested on Felony shoplifting charges, 7th offence in 2 years
Alina B. Click, 24, was arrested Friday in reference to a shoplifting incident that occurred nearly a week ago. Click allegedly attempted to abscond with items from Kmart without paying for them, and was located on Friday. Click was arrested without incident. Charges were upgraded to felony shoplifting when a criminal history report revealed that Click has been arrested in seven different shoplifting incidents, organized retail theft and identity theft within the past two years.

ORC 2-15-16
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