November 8, 2013

Attempted Wednesday Walmart theft results in 2 arrests

James Bright, Managing Editor,
The Express-Star


Another attempted theft was thwarted at the Chickasha Walmart Wednesday. 

Chickasha Police Officer Ryan Rahlf was dispatched to the store in reference to a shoplifter that was reportedly being uncooperative. 

"While en route | heard dispatch say the suspect had fled north from the store. As I was arriving on 1st Street I noticed Walmart employees by the wooded area north of Walmart pointing into the woods. I exited my patrol unit and ran up to the woods. I advised Officer Hunt, who had arrived to assist, to go to the north end of the  woods. I entered the woods and was able to flush the suspect out. Officer Hunt advised me the suspect ran from him after he ordered him to stop," Rahlf said. "Officer Hunt was in uniform and in a marked patrol car when he pulled up. Officer Hunt chased the suspect a short distance and caught him. The suspect was identified as Lance James Conner. I arrived with Officer Hunt and spoke to Conner about some basic questions of who he was. While speaking with him | noticed his speech was slurred and he had an odor of alcoholic beverages about his breath and person. I had Officer Hunt transport Conner to the Grady County Jail for me."

Rahlf returned to Walmart where he spoke with an employee who told him he  witnessed Conner and another male in the store with a shopping cart full of merchandise. 

The employee said Conner and the other suspect placed clothes, food, beer, electronics and airsoft guns into the cart, but did not make any attempt to purchase the merchandise. 

"(The employee) said Conner pushed the cart past the registers and to the point where the alarm system sounded. He said he confronted Conner, but he left the cart and fled. He said he kept contact with the unknown male, and was able to get a license plate number from his vehicle as he left," Rahlf wrote in an incident report. The value of items in the cart were reported to be worth $640.07. 

Officer Chad King arrived on the scene shortly after. Upon reviewing security video of the incident, King said the other suspect appeared to be James Brookshire. Rahlf said he knew Brookshire lives at 1327 W. Dakota Ave. from a previous incident. 

Rahlf located Brookshire at the residence. 

"Brookshire tried to say he was unaware that Conner was going to steal the merchandise. I advised Brookshire that his statement is different from what the video showed us. Brookshire then told me that Conner talked him into going and helping. I placed Brookshire under arrest and transported him to the Grady County Jail where he was booked in for grand larceny," Rahlf said. 

Conner was booked into the jail for grand larceny and public intoxication.