WESTERLY — A Connecticut man is facing charges after the police said he fled Walmart when a loss prevention officer with the company interrupted an attempt to steal more than $1,000 worth of clothing, food and other items.
Westerly police arrested 61-year-old Patrick T. Kennedy, of Baltic, last Friday on charges of shoplifting of more than $100 in goods, receiving stolen goods, habitual shoplifting, possession of implements to aid in shoplifting and driving when license is suspended or denied. He was arraigned and released after posting a $10,000 surety bond, Rhode Island court records show.
The police were called to the Westerly Walmart around 1:30 p.m. for reports of a man who had just attempted to leave with a shopping carriage full of goods. Employees told police the man skipped the checkout area and walked out of the store with the carriage, but left it behind when a loss prevention officer began following him into the parking lot. He proceeded to get into a white Volkswagen and left traveling south on Route 1.
An officer located Kennedy’s car near Ocean State Job Lot and conducted a traffic stop, calling for backup. The police said when the officer approached Kennedy and asked him where he was coming from, Kennedy responded by telling police, “OK, you got me.”
The police said Kennedy admitted to attempting to steal items, but denied having stolen anything. In his car, however, officers found $394.70 worth of merchandise that contained meats with barcode information associating it with the Westerly Walmart store. Kennedy denied purchasing them at that location and could not provide a receipt, the police said.
The police said a check of the carriage of stolen items found mostly food, including meats, and clothing. The estimated value of the items he attempted to steal was $1,027, the police said.
During the arrest, the police said officers also found Kennedy in possession of a magnetic tag remover typically used to remove anti-theft devices from clothing. The device was likely used in the shoplifting, the police said, and led to the additional charge.