Stealing is clearly wrong at any time, but some cases are so jaw-dropping that you wonder what is wrong with people.
If there’s a prize for “Most Heartless Theft,” two women in Michigan may have just won it. Last week, two women from the Flint area were arrested for retail fraud after they tried to walk out of a Target store with thousands of dollars worth of merchandise.
Shoplifting is sadly common, but this instance gets worse. According to WXYZ News in Detroit, the women are accused of stealing during a “Shop with a Cop” event where police officers volunteered their time to spend time with children for holiday shopping at the store.
“The charity event is held to aid underprivileged kids during the Christmas season,” the news station explained.
“During the event, officers were notified that two women were being questioned on suspicion of Retail Fraud in the loss prevention office,” WXYZ continued.
Those two would-be Grinches were identified as 40-year-old Keiana Wilson and 18-year-old Dana Johnson. Authorities say they tried to make off with nearly $2,000 in electronics during the charity event.
You could probably add “Dumbest Criminal” awards to the list for the pair of women. When store loss prevention employees realized what was happening, officers who were already at the charity event responded in record time.
“About 15 police officers from four departments — Sylvan Lake, Keego Harbor, Orchard Lake and Bloomfield Township — were at the Target at 2400 Telegraph Wednesday night, helping 22 disadvantaged children pick out Christmas presents for their families,” elaborated The Detroit Free Press.
“The loss prevention (officers) actually apprehended them, then they asked for police assistance,” Officer Michael Mondeau told the newspaper. “The police officers were only about 20 feet away when they tried to walk out of the store.”
“I couldn’t believe it,” added Sgt. Dan Brown.
Adding to the disbelief about the attempted theft was the fact that the women knew the store was filled with police, and at least one of the alleged thieves actually chatted with an officer before she tried to walk out with thousands of dollars in merchandise.
Sgt. Brown told the Free Press that the younger woman, Johnson, approached one of the officers to compliment “how generous the cops were with their time.”
But it turns out that her friendliness was just a ruse.
“It wasn’t 10 minutes later that (the same officer) gets called into the loss prevention office,” Brown recalled. “She was trying to distract him.”
The entire strange incident could have been avoided with just basic common sense. “DON’T TAKE WHAT IS NOT YOURS, it’s a simple rule that everyone should abide by and the world would be a better place,” the Keego Harbor Police Department, which participated in the shopping event, posted on Facebook.
Thankfully, that charity projected ended on a high note despite the strange start.
“It was fun and so cool to watch the how excited the kids were to be able to pick gifts off the shelves for themselves, their sisters and brothers and parents,” Keego Harbor Police also posted.
“Some of kids were almost more generous to others with their gift choices than to themselves. Another note — the managers and associates at Target couldn’t have been more helpful and nice!” said the department.
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