Real Life Somerville Police Stories:Benny GARCIA (Larceny) Shoplifting at TJ Max Assembly Row 


On Friday, April 1, 2016, while assigned to marked unit East-4, I was dispatched to TJ Maxx for the report of a male shoplifter.


Upon arrival, I met with the Loss Prevention Officer, XXXXX, who had witnessed the defendant, Benny Garcia, trying to leave the store with a shopping cart filled with unpaid merchandise. XXXXX stopped Garcia and escorted him to the office until my arrival. XXXXX was in the process of logging all the merchandise Garcia attempted to steal. According to XXXXX, the merchandise was going to total to at least $2,000. I asked Garcia if he had any form of identification on him and he replied that he did not. I then asked Garcia for his name and date of birth with which he provided. When I asked Somerville Control to confirm the information Garcia had provided me with, Somerville Control relayed back to me that there was no information found. I then asked Garcia to provide me with his social security number, and he did. When I had Somerville Control run that, again, they were unable to come up with anything. At this time, Somerville Control dispatched marked unit East-3 to back me up.


At this point, I asked Garcia to stand with his hands on the wall so that I could search him. During my search, I located a pocket knife in his left, jean pocket. I also located two wallets, both containing credit cards and a MBTA pass with his name and photograph on it. At this time, I placed Garcia in handcuffs, for my protection as I was unsure if he had any other weapons on him. I also made sure to double lock the handcuffs and check them for tightness.


The MBTA pass and the credit cards all had the name “Benny Garcia” on them. When I asked Garcia why he had credit cards and a MBTA Pass on him with a different name, Garcia admitted to lying because “he was afraid.” I had also asked Garcia if he had ever been arrested before, and he replied “Never.” I then relayed the new name and date of birth I had found and Somerville Control was able to locate Garcia in CJIS and informed me that he had open cases. I then radioed to Somerville Control to send the prisoner transport vehicle as I now had Garcia under arrest for larceny over.


At this point, XXXXX was still not done logging all the merchandise Garcia attempted to steal, but was at a total of $1,900 and still had more merchandise to add. East-3 and I then escorted Garcia out of the store and were met outside by marked unit 200. Garcia was then transported to the Somerville Police Department where he was booked by the shift commander.


Respectfully submitted,


Officer Ashley Catatao #299


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