SAFFORD – It was no April Fools joke when authorities were dispatched to Walmart last Monday, April 1st around 2:30 pm due to a citizen calling to report seeing a man and woman placing items that were not purchased into a bag inside of Walmart. When the officer arrived, the reporting party pointed the couple out who was now walking South on 20th Avenue towards Bulldog Boulevard.
Authorities made contact with the couple and asked if they had been shopping at Walmart. The two stated that they had. Both of them were holding plastic bags with merchandise in them. When they were asked if they had purchased the items, the woman stated she had used her WIC card to purchase the items. When the officer asked if she had her receipt with her, the woman began to look but then stated she may have left it in the basket at Walmart.
The officer noticed the woman was carrying a large purse with a sweater over the top of it. She was asked if she was concealing anything inside of the purse. The woman reported the items she had purchased from Safeway were inside of the purse. The officer asked to look inside of the purse, however, the woman responded, ” I would rather you not”. The officer advised the woman if she was concealing items in the purse, they would be reasonable. The woman then stated that a flashlight fell from a shelf into her basket and that she did not pay for it. The woman provided the officer with the flashlight still inside its packaging. The woman reported she knew she should have paid for the item but left the store without doing so.
When the officer conducted a search of the woman’s purse more items were found, including a set of mens socks, Axe deodorant, 50 QT equate X2, Duck tape, foil, vitamin E oil, Always liners, flashlight, GTX 1 QT, HH black hair spray, MB three pack. Also inside of the purse was a jar of mayonnaise the woman stated she had shoplifted from Safeway. A Thatcher officer was called to collect the mayonnaise.
Records informed the officer the woman had been trespassed from Walmart and had committed shoplifting on four other occasions within the past five years. The woman reported to the officer she had acted alone and the man was unaware of the incident. The total amount of merchandise taken from Walmart recovered was listed as $102.64.
The officer advised the woman charges for felony shoplifting would be forwarded to the County Attorney.