Breaking News in the Industry: September 11, 2018

Shoplifting suspect accused of running over deputy’s foot; hitting cars

What was first a shoplifting run for Indiana authorities, landed a Henderson woman in trouble for a lot more, including woman including battery on law enforcement. Evansville police responded to a 9-1-1 call at Eastland Mall reporting Marilyn Crosby was shoplifting. A sheriff’s deputy was on the clock nearby. He says he found Cosby’s car driving away from the mall, and pulled her over into a parkling lot. During that interaction, the deputy leaned into her window to take her keys out of the ignition. That’s when the deputy says Cosby put her car into reverse, dragged the deputy several feet, and ran over his foot. Investigators say Cosby also hit two cars, including the deputy’s cruiser.   [Source: 14 News]

Grocery store employee facing felony theft charges for eating $9,200 of deli ham

An Ohio grocery store employee is facing the possibility of felony theft charges for her daily snacking habit. The unnamed employee worked in Bolivar at the grocery chain Giant Eagle for eight years – during that time authorities say she helped herself to three to five slices of ham every day, totaling $9,200 in lost revenue. Authorities say she would also sometimes eat salami.

The Associated Press reports that the store’s loss prevention manager received a tip that the employee had been eating the meat slices for years. The woman is facing potential felony theft charges, however, Tuscarawas County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement on Facebook that “felony charges are unlikely.” “While our office did take a report of the issue as requested by the store, no determination of charges has been made.

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The procedure is to send the report to the Prosecutor’s Office and they are the ones to decide. “While my office does not have the authority to make the final decision in this case, I do feel confident that once all of the facts are relayed to the Prosecutor, Felony charges are unlikely,” the statement read before adding that no arrests and “no formal filing of charges” had happened.   [Source: Fox News]

Bon-Ton plots comeback after tech company buys IP

A technology and brand holding company has plans to reboot Bon-Ton following the discount department store chain’s liquidation in bankruptcy this year. A subsidiary of CSC Generation, which owns the online home goods seller DirectBuy and apparel e-tailer Killion, was the winning bidder in a July 31 auction for Bon-Ton’s intellectual property assets, according to court documents. The sale currently awaits court approval. Bon-Ton’s website currently carries banner messages telling visitors, “Bon-Ton is coming back!” Some of the retailer’s subsidiary brands, including Younkers, have similar messages.

USA Today reported Thursday that CSC Generation plans to emphasize online shopping experience and that it is in “advanced discussions” with landlords around reopening stores in Colorado, Indiana, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania. In stores, the retailer plans to add styling services and extended hours, according to USA Today. Jordan Voloshin, co-president of CSC Generation, told the newspaper, “The new Bon-Ton is a department store tailored to the expectations of the modern customer.” CSC Generation did not immediately respond to Retail Dive’s request for comment.   [Source: RetailDIVE]

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Robbery suspect in custody after allegedly threatening employee with axe

A robbery suspect in Alaska allegedly swung a hatchet at employees Wednesday afternoon as he attempted to exit a store in the Nugget Mall. According to a Juneau Police Department release, a Sportsman’s Warehouse employee approached Pavel Bogatko, 28, outside the store as he attempted to leave the area with a basket of merchandise without paying. When they asked him to return the items, Bogatko allegedly took a hatchet out of the basket and swung it at an employee. No one was hurt, but police say Bogatko then dropped the basket and took off on foot, still carrying the hatchet.

Employees called police who responded and pursued the suspect to Ka-See-Ann Drive where a witness said they saw a man jump a fence. Police say Bogatko did not have the hatchet when they found him. Officers later found it in the woods nearby. Sportsman’s Warehouse employees and surveillance footage later confirmed Bogatko’s identity as the suspect, according to JPD. The stolen items totaling $930 were recovered and police placed Bogatko under arrested and charged him with robbery and theft.  Online arrest records list him as currently in custody.  [Source: KTOO Public Media]

Dad admits opening credit cards in daughter’s name, stealing thousands from her

A Montana man admitted defrauding friends and family out of tens of thousands of dollars in Yellowstone County District Court on Thursday. Separate charges accusing him of stealing from Stillwater County are still pending. Robert Charles Love, 53, pleaded guilty to two misdemeanors and five felonies: theft, two counts of deceptive practices and two counts of identity theft. Love used credit cards belonging to his daughter and opened two additional credit cards in her name, charging roughly $13,000 to the new cards,  according to prosecutors.

Love spent the money on a cruise to Mexico for himself and his girlfriend, tanning bed sessions and court costs related to Love’s DUI case among other purchases, charges state. Love’s daughter learned of the fraud while applying for a college loan. She told police she was denied based on a low credit score but had previously had a high credit score. Love also took $8,810 from the bank account of an acquaintance during the man’s three-month hospital stay and paid it to one of the fraudulent credit cards, according to court filings. Love later used that card to make payments to the same man for a truck Love was buying from him, according to charges. Under a plea deal, prosecutors have agreed to recommend a six-year deferred sentence, restitution and an apology letter to the victims. Sentencing is set for Oct. 18.   [Source: Billings Gazette]

Hurricane Florence path toward the East Coast triggers states’ price-gouging laws

Hurricane Florence is gaining speed in the Atlantic Ocean and expected to become a major hurricane soon. As Hurricane Florence was gaining speed to become a category 4 storm, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster declared a state of emergency on Saturday, he also called anti-price-gouging laws into effect. In South Carolina, selling or renting goods or lodging “at an unconscionable price” is subject to civil penalties of up to $5,000 per violation (or up to $15,000 per violation if an injunction has been issued) and may be charged as a misdemeanor, with a fine of up to $1,000 and/or 30 days in jail.

“With the possibility that Florence could make landfall in South Carolina, our people have already started making preparations,” Attorney General Alan Wilson said. “We can expect normal price increases, but we may see businesses and individuals looking to unfairly take advantage of the situation through price gouging of food, gasoline, lodging, and other commodities as defined by the statute. By our law, that’s a criminal violation and an unfair trade practice.”

Virginia and North Carolina have also declared states of emergency, which allows them to call in the National Guard. Virginia’s price gouging law allows for a civil penalty of up to $2,500 per violation (or up to $5,000 if in violation of an injunction), and North Carolina allows for a civil penalty of up to $5,000 per violation. Price gouging amid natural disasters and other emergencies should be reported to state attorneys general. A total of 34 states and the District of Columbia have anti-price-gouging laws on the books. The northern coast of South Carolina and the Outer Banks of North Carolina are likely to be the areas most impacted by the storm, which could cause $15.3 billion in damage, said Chuck Watson, a disaster researcher at Enki Research in Savannah, Georgia.   [Source: Fortune]

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