Holiday Shoplifting Roundup

By Christopher Coble, Esq. on December 28, 2015 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

'Tis the season for gifts. And, for those without adequate disposable income or with a penchant for criminality, 'tis also the season for shoplifting.

Desperation, debt, decadence, and downright desire can all lead a person to shoplift during the holiday season, so here's your roundup of holiday shoplifting stories:

Double Dipping

One heartless heister got a head start on the holidays, when he allegedly took two trucks from a New Jersey police station's Toys for Tots bin. Surveillance video showed a man, who had just been arrested, processed, and released for shoplifting at a Lord & Taylor store, help himself to a couple Hess trucks from the police station on his way out.

This Grinch's story did have a happy ending, however: the thief returned the trucks with a written apology explaining he had taken them for his four-year-old cousin, and the police captain promised to ask for leniency from the judge since the toys were returned.

Welcome to Walmart, Please Don't Help Yourself

Walmart's ubiquity also makes it a popular target for shoplifters, and two struck the mega-retailer on Christmas Eve. An Alabama man was apprehended after fleeing from police and a loss prevention officer in a Walmart parking lot. He was arrested, charged with robbery, and booked into jail on a $2,500 bond.

A few hours east in Georgia, a woman was trying to slip past security in the self checkout line. It turned out her receipt did not match the items in her bag, to the tune of 17 extra items. According to Augusta's WRDW, the woman apologized for shoplifting, explaining that she is homeless, has been seeking help, and "wished she could pay for the items." Although she was arrested, perhaps Richmond County authorities will take a page from their New Jersey brethren and go easy on the woman.

As Wayne police captain Laurence Martin said, "Humanity goes a long way."

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