Reluctant to let go, Bloomington jacket thief is arrested

The loot was a little too valuable to leave behind, initially, but a 21-year-old Minneapolis man’s attempt to steal several jackets didn’t pay off as he had intended.

The suspect was arrested Aug. 29 after fleeing on foot from the Bloomington Herberger’s store at Southtown, according to Bloomington Police Cmdr. Kim Clauson.

The suspect wasn’t particularly discreet in his attempt at stealing seven winter coats, a spring jacket and two hats, valued at $1,429. He attempted to exit the store with the merchandise in hand at 12:30 p.m. when he was confronted by a store manager and a loss prevention officer, who were both aware that the suspect had been collecting merchandise in his arms. The store manager told the suspect to stop as he was exiting the store, but the suspect continued, only turning around long enough to swear at the manager, according to Clauson.

The suspect fled through the Southtown parking lot, with merchandise in hand, as the loss prevention officer attempted to chase him. The suspect made it through the Southtown parking lot and across Penn Avenue with the merchandise, eventually tossing the jackets and hats into a garbage bin outside of the Target store, Clauson noted.

An officer responding to the theft report searched the parking lots of Target and the nearby Hobby Lobby store. The officer saw a man matching the suspect’s description and pulled up to him in front of Hobby Lobby. The suspect initially raised his arms into the air, but then ran inside the store, Clauson said.

The officer chased after the suspect and arrested him after he gave up inside the store, she added.

He was booked on suspicion of felony theft and fleeing a police officer.

Car prowling

Three Minneapolis men were arrested at Mall of America, suspected of stealing items from parked vehicles.

The trio was arrested during the afternoon of Aug. 25, and are suspects in thefts from six vehicles, according to Clauson.

There were three police reports of theft from parked vehicles on Aug. 23, and a witness reported the trio checking windows of vehicles parked in the mall’s east ramp on Aug. 25. Surveillance cameras located the trio following the report, and the men appeared to match the trio associated with incidents captured on surveillance video Aug. 23, Clauson explained.

Mall security officers confronted the trio outside the mall. The men – 23, 21 and 19 – fled into the mall through the entrance to Forever 21. Two police officers responding to the report of the fleeing trio caught two of the suspects before they were able to enter the mall from Forever 21. The third suspect was not with the other men, but was tracked down inside the mall, according to Clauson.

Inside Forever 21, one of the men had dropped a backpack containing a laptop computer and other items that matched those reported stolen from a parked vehicle that day, she noted.

All three men were booked on suspicion of felony theft.

Assault

A 30-year-old Bloomington man was arrested on suspicion of felony domestic assault and strangulation, accused of attacking his girlfriend in the apartment they share.

The victim, a 29-year-old woman, came to the police department’s lobby at 1:20 a.m. Aug. 27 to report that she had been assaulted. She said she had returned to her apartment from work the previous afternoon and her boyfriend was upset at how long it had taken her to come home from work. She reported that he became violent, grabbing her by the throat, covering her nose and mouth with his hand, threatening to kill her and punching her in the face, which knocked her to the ground, Clauson said.

The woman added that the suspect dragged her from their bedroom to the living room, banging her head on the floor as he did so. The assault continued for hours before they went to bed. The woman woke up, however, and began to pack a bag of personal possessions. When her boyfriend woke up, he chased her out of the apartment. Neighbors saw her in the courtyard of their apartment building and asked her boyfriend if she needed help. He said that she was upset about family matters and returned to the apartment, Clauson explained.

The woman walked to the police station to report the incident, and had bruises, swelling and scratches on her face. An ambulance was called to the police station and the woman initially cooperated with paramedics, but declined to go inside the hospital upon arrival, opting instead to walk away, Clauson noted.

Her boyfriend was arrested at their apartment, on the 100 block of 97th Street West, following her report.

Check theft

Three men were arrested after one of the men attempted to cash a suspicious check.

The men were arrested during the afternoon of Aug. 24 after a 32-year-old Shakopee man attempted to cash a $923 check at U.S. Bank, 1550 American Blvd. E., Clauson said.

Police officers were dispatched to the scene while the suspect was still inside the bank. He presented a check that was suspicious, and a verification call to the account holder determined that the check had been stolen from the victim’s mailbox, along with other checks she was mailing, according to Clauson.

The suspect fled the bank before police officers arrived, leaving his identification behind, she noted.

A witness outside the bank reported seeing the fleeing suspect enter a white sedan on Bloomington Avenue. An officer spotted a vehicle matching the description near the intersection of 12th Avenue and Interstate 494. The officer was able to conduct a traffic stop without incident, resulting in the arrest of the suspect and two other men inside the vehicle, Clauson explained.

A search of their vehicle uncovered additional mail that appeared to be stolen and receipts that were connected to $1,700 in credit card fraud, Clauson added.

The Shakopee man was booked on suspicion of possessing stolen property and stolen checks, check forgery and an outstanding warrant. Also arrested were a 30-year-old St. Paul man and a 30-year-old Farmington man on suspicion of possessing stolen property and stolen checks, as well as check forgery.

Robberies

An 18-year-old Bloomington man claimed he was robbed while attempting to buy tennis shoes at 4 a.m.

Police officers were dispatched to the 10300 block of Devonshire Circle at 4:10 a.m. Aug. 25. The victim said that he had arranged to buy tennis shoes from a man he didn’t know, but was referred to by a man he knew from school. The victim reported that he received a phone call at 4 a.m. regarding the purchase, went outside his apartment building to meet the seller and entered the back seat of a vehicle. There were four males in the vehicle, and one of the men in the front seat turned around and pointed a gun at him, Clauson said.

The male sitting next to the victim reportedly took $355 from him, then told him to exit the vehicle. The victim reported that the four males drove off in a gray, four-door sedan with a luggage rack, Clauson added.

A Bloomington business also reported a robbery.

A 29-year-old employee at MetroPCS, 1710 E. Old Shakopee Road, reported that a male approximately 16-20 years old, wearing a Pittsburgh Steelers sweatshirt, entered the store at 3:30 p.m. Aug. 29 and demanded cash. The employee asked the man not to rob him, but the man replied that if he didn’t rob the store, he would rob somebody else, as he needed cash, but was sorry, according to Clauson.

The perpetrator pulled out a Taser gun, and the employee handed over cash, Clauson said.

Prostitution

A prostitution sting conducted in Bloomington resulted in the arrest of 14 men.

Police officers from Bloomington, St. Louis Park and St. Paul, as well as deputies from the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office, conducted a two-day sting Aug. 23-24 using a hotel and an online ad, according to Clauson.

Most of the men were from the Twin Cities, although a 49-year-old Helena, Montana, man was arrested, as was a man with no permanent address. The suspects ranged in age from 20 to 66.

 

Follow Bloomington community editor Mike Hanks on Twitter at @suncurrent and on Facebook at suncurrentcentral.