An Englewood man was found guilty of grand theft while wearing a disguise after a jury trial in Charlotte County.
The crime happened in May 2018 at a 24-hour Walmart in Englewood. According to the State Attorney’s Office, employees realized there had been a theft when they found empty electronics packages in the store.
Loss prevention officers looked at surveillance video and saw two individuals, later identified as Justin Richardson and Sara Greus, taking electronics, including phone and computer accessories, out of their packages and putting the items under clothes in a shopping cart.
Richardson and Greus pushed the cart into the garden center, and Greus pushed out the cart of stolen items, while Richardson took a grill and wheeled it out of the gate. Richardson was wearing a camouflage jacket and a head scarf, which concealed his identity, covering a large and distinctive tattoo on the back of his head.
Loss prevention officers contacted the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office to report the theft. The responding deputy noticed a tattoo with a girl’s name and unique design on the Richardson’s cheek, which he recognized from observing him in and around the Englewood area.
A BOLO was issued for Justin Richardson, and deputies located both Richardson and Greus at a motel near the store. A search of their room revealed six of the 11 stolen items matching the empty packages, and another was found in the glove box of a car.
The camouflage jacket and headscarf were also found in the room, along with methamphetamines and drug paraphernalia. Both were arrested.
When Richardson was taken into custody, he also had a syringe in his pocket with residue consistent with prior methamphetamine use.
Richardson’s sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 22.
Greus previously pleaded no contest in her case to grand theft and possession of a controlled substance and was sentenced to 48 months on probation.