Real Life Somerville Police Stories: Paul CAPOTOSTO (Shoplifting) Riteaid

On 3/18/19, I, Officer Christopher Collette was assigned to Somerville marked unit West Seven. At approximately 1929 hours, I was dispatched to the Rite Aid at 393 Highland Ave. for a shoplifting. The reporting party advised Somerville Control that the shoplifter was still on scene and was part of a group that was shoplifting earlier (SPD INC# 19015031). Officer Lorenti was dispatched as well. Once on scene, XXXX, a pharmacy employee, pointed out a male she believed had been shoplifting. She stated that she observed this party place store merchandise into a bag. I immediately recognized this male as Paul Caposto as having been involved in a shoplifting incident that occurred approximately one hour earlier. In that incident, SPD INC# 19015031, Mr. Caposto had been in the company of another male and two females. One of the females, unknown to me had attempted to steal from the store. The second female, XXXX was arrested for an outstanding warrant. Post arrest, she allowed Mr. Caposto to retain her belongings which included a brown Rite Aid bag of verified purchases.
As I observed Mr. Caposto, I placed him in handcuffs as Officer Lorenti monitored him and I moved around the store, investigating further. Mr. Caposto He had no bag of merchandise with him, but he was wearing XXXX’s back pack. I spoke in further detail with XXXX. She stated that Mr. Caposto had never left the store since the first incident. She observed him walking around an aisle that contained vitamins and tablets. He was selecting merchandise and putting it in his bag. She observed that in the bag there was a box of Play-Doh. Mr. Caposto appeared to be placing merchandise underneath the Play-Doh in order to conceal it from view. Mr. Caposto left his bag and ventured further in the store, browsing. XXXX believed that Mr. Caposto’s behavior was odd, and so she moved his bag behind the pharmacy counter. Mr. Caposto returned to find his bag, and she observed that he was carrying store merchandise. She advised him that she could “ring up” the items he carried. He stated that he was looking for his bag. He then threw the items back onto shelves.
While I spoke with XXXX, a store manager, XXXX, had found Mr. Caposto’s bag and began to tally the items. Based on XXXX’s statements of Mr. Caposto adding merchandise to a brown Rite Aid bag, the bag he may have been given by XXXX, I believed it to be more probable than not, that he was trying to conceal new merchandise underneath items that XXXX had purchased. I advised Mr. Caposto that he was under arrest for shoplifting. Officer Lorenti searched Mr. Caposto and discovered several cosmetics in left pocket of Mr. Caposto’s pants ($41.47).
I then spoke with XXXX, and XXXX a pharmacy employee. XXXX identified one of the items, an Icy Hot, battery powered pain relief device ($42.99), as an item she had observed Mr. Caposto placing into his bag. XXXX advised me that XXXX had not purchased that item. While XXXX was tallying the merchandise, she came across an empty 30 Ct. package of Extenze (42.99). XXXX was able to identify several items that she observed Mr. Caposto place into his bag. These items were: (1) BioFreeze Gel Pump $26.99, (1) Nugenix Testoserone Booster $69.99, (1) 40 Ct. package of Progene $25.99, (1) 60Ct. package of Leanfire $69.99, (1) 16 OZ. of Grape Carbo16 $46.99, and (1) 120 Ct. package of Mega Red $43.99. The total of these items were $283.94. Mr. Caposto was searched a second time when the transport vehicle arrived. At that point, Officer Lorenti and Cleary found several more items concealed in Mr. Caposto’s groin area. These items were : (1) 2 Ct. package of NasaCort spray $36.99, (1) Altec Ear buds $14.99, (1) 32 GB Ultra Micro SD card $31.99, and (1) Can of Neutrogena shaving cream $6.79. The total of these items were $90.76. The total of all items was $502.12
XXXX did identify some items in Mr. Caposto’s bag as belonging to XXXX. She was unsure as to what other items may have been hers. I seized all merchandise that Rite Aid could not identify as their own. These items will be secured at the station and held until ownership is proven. I will be charging Mr. Caposto with shoplifting, over $250 by concealment 266/30A.

Respectfully submitted,

Patrolman Christopher Collette, B#302

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