Shoplifter wastes his chance to steal steaks: Middleburg Heights Police Blotter


Flight: Southland Drive

An officer attended Giant Eagle at 1:37 p.m. on April 7 regarding a shoplifter. The man, who stole several steaks, however, was no longer in the store. He had left the store and was heading towards Pearl Road.

The store’s Loss Prevention agent and officer found the man outside the Verizon store.

Giant Eagle’s loss prevention officer said she approached the man as he walked past all the checkout counters with the merchandise without paying for the steaks. The suspect then dumped the items in the parking lot and continued on his way.

The items taken were valued at $355.

He was taken back to the store, where he received a copy of the no trespassing letter which he signed. He was advised never to return to the store or he would be cited for trespassing. He was charged with shoplifting.

Flight: Engle Road

Police attended Amazon’s fulfillment center at 10:41 a.m. on April 7 regarding an employee who stole an item on April 2.

The center’s loss prevention officer said the suspect was at her workstation at 12:33 a.m. on April 4, picking from a cargo pod. In surveillance footage, the suspect was seen removing an Apple Watch from the pod and hiding it on a shelf behind it.

About 15 minutes later, while behind the shelf, she opened the package and placed the empty box in a bin near her post. An hour later, she returned to the shelf behind her with her purse and appeared to place the watch in the bag.

Later, a manager discovered the empty watch box, prompting the investigation.

The center interviewed the suspect on April 6. She did not recognize the theft and asked to excuse herself to go to the bathroom. She then quickly ran to the restroom and left the building. His job was then terminated.

The watch was valued at $279.

The center wished to invoice the employee. The officer received all the information, including a USB key containing a video of the investigation.

The police officer spoke to the suspect by telephone. He asked her if she wanted to make a statement about the incident. She said she took the watch, but was ready to return it.

She said she stormed out of the meeting because she felt management was not communicating with her and was wasting her time. The officer told him about the theft charge.

Flight: Southland Drive

An officer attended Giant Eagle on April 7 regarding a shoplifter who left the store without paying for items.

The officer met the shoplifter, who said she made a mistake. She admitted walking past the checkouts with $194 worth of groceries.

The store’s loss prevention officer stopped her in the parking lot. She agreed to return to the store. She was cited for theft and told not to return to any Giant Eagle stores.

There was no explanation as to how she had made this “mistake”.

Safe Crack Attempt: Pearl Road

An officer attended the Shell gas station at 11.30am on April 10 for a report of a man shoplifting an over-the-counter drug. He also attempted to open the ATM with a pair of scissors.

A store employee said he saw a car with about three people drive into the gas station and park in front of a pump. A man, whom the employee described in detail, entered the station and asked if the store sold lottery tickets.

After a brief interaction, the man walked to the medicine aisle, retrieved an unfamiliar item, and placed it in his left pocket. He then walked into the restroom and stayed there until he heard one of the employees walk by.

He finally left the restroom, and while he was near the hallway, looked at the surveillance camera, looked over the wall near the ATM, and then walked back down the hallway to the employee door that led behind the cash counter.

He opened the door briefly, looking like he was trying to get in, but decided against it and headed for the ATM instead.

The suspect tried to withdraw money with a bank card, but was unsuccessful. He threw several ATM receipts into the trash, which the employee then retrieved. The employee also found the debit card the man had tried to use to withdraw cash inside the ATM. The card bore the name of a man.

Once the suspect realized he was unable to retrieve cash from the ATM, he grabbed a pair of scissors left by the clerk on the cafe counter. He returned to the ATM and inserted the scissors into the slot in the door, trying to open the door. He couldn’t do it.

The suspect then entered the beer cellar/beverage cooler and walked around. Store employees found his behavior suspicious and asked him to leave, at which point he became hostile and knocked several items off the shelves.

He eventually left the store without further incident.

The officer checked the ATM, which had several scratches on the door slot. The employee gave the officer a USB key containing video footage of the encounter.

The agent could not find any information about the owner of the debit card left behind. The store wouldn’t pursue anything about the man who was stealing the drugs. Store cameras did not show the car’s license plate number.

Dangerous Drugs: Engle Road

An officer was on a routine patrol at 12:26 p.m. on April 8 in the parking lot of Motel 6. He checked a car’s license plate and discovered it belonged to another vehicle.

While the officer was investigating the car, a man came out of a room and asked why the officer was looking at the car. The man said the car wasn’t his.

He walked back into the room and looked at the officer through the blinds. The officer asked the clerk for the list of this exhibit.

A woman had rented the room. She had an active warrant for possession of heroin. The officer saw the image of the woman’s driver’s license and prepared to leave the scene. While walking towards his cruiser, the woman whose photo he had just seen left the room and walked towards him.

She asked him why he was looking at his car. She initially gave the officer a false first name, but then admitted her true identity. She was taken into custody.

Willoughby police confirmed the warrant and agreed to pick her up in Cleveland.

An officer went to her room to retrieve her purse. It was placed in the front passenger floor. An officer searched the purse before taking her to the meeting place. He found a small bag containing suspected heroin.

She was transferred to the other department. The drugs were sent to a lab for testing.

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Dino S. Williams