Three women from the Sacramento area were arrested at the Manteca Target store last week and found to be in possession of more than $4,000 worth of stolen merchandise.
Mia Whitted, 19, Charlene Valdez, 18, and a 17-year-old juvenile were arrested after they were spotted by loss prevention officers at the Manteca Target store who were tipped off from the company’s Lodi location.
The employees were able to identify the trio as being responsible for the theft of more than $2,500 worth of baby formula just three days prior – prompting them to contact Manteca Police for assistance.
While Manteca Police Detective Dave Brown and Officer Adam Ragsdale were in route, loss pretention reportedly saw the women filling a cart with additional baby formula – which has been in short supply globally thanks to supply chain issues – that had been placed in large totes.
The women reportedly refused to stop when attempting to exit the store with the cart full of merchandise that hadn’t been paid for just before Brown and Ragsdale arrived on scene and detained the women without incident.
After a brief investigation the women were found to be in possession of $2,400 worth of merchandise stolen from the Manteca Target, $1,200 worth of merchandise stolen from the Lodi Target, and more than $600 worth of merchandise from the Elk Grove Walmart. All three were arrested and charged with organized retail theft, grand theft, and conspiracy – all felonies.
As one of the only agencies in Northern California with a dedicated investigator solely working on organized retail theft, the Manteca Police took pride in the arrest and the work that went into making it happen.
“Suspects who commit these types of crimes in our jurisdiction are commonly wanted by other jurisdictions for the same offenses,” the Manteca Police said in a statement. “Having an investigator specifically assigned to this type of criminal activity allows us to thoroughly investigate these crimes on a multi-jurisdictional scale and bring these suspects to justice.”
To contact reporter Jason Campbell email email@example.com or call 209.249.3544.