Real Life Somerville Police Stories: James MCKENNA (Shoplifting)

On Thursday, July 12, 2018, I was working in full uniform for the Somerville Police, assigned to marked cruiser 782 (East 2), when I was dispatched to 400 Somerville Ave (Market Basket) for a report of an unwanted person. Upon arrival with Officer Jose Ramirez (East 3), I spoke with store Manager XXXX, who stated he was in the process of watching a male, whom he had known as James McKenna, inside the store. XXXX was watching McKenna because he has known McKenna to shoplift from the store in the past. XXXX was also sure that McKenna was trespass from the store, but could not locate legal document at this time. As we watched McKenna on store surveillance, XXXX explained just how McKenna would shoplift from the store. McKenna would enter the store, grab a hand basket, go through the store selecting several items, placing them in the basket. He would then approach the front end registers and just walk through the line without paying for the item, then jump into a waiting motor vehicle outside the store.

McKenna had disappeared from view of the store surveillance, but located by Officer Ramirez a short time later inside the store. The hand basket he was carrying was empty, but he was carrying a Market Basket brand recyclable lawn bag. Inside the lawn bag were several meat packages: 2 packages of sirloin steak tips, 1 package of rib steaks, 1 package of short rib, 2 packages of sirloin tips that we watched McKenna select earlier. McKenna was placed under arrest for concealing the merchandise. He was escorted out of the store, where he was placed in the transport van and brought back to the station, where was booked on the charges. A search of the aisle where McKenna was stopped, I located a package of lawn bags that should have contained 5 to a pack, in a bag.

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