Shoplifter arrested after theft spree

SPD logo-1A 47-year-old St. Paul man was arrested Saturday on a misdemeanor shoplifting charge after allegedly going on a theft spree earlier that day at several downtown Stillwater stores.

The man, identified in a Stillwater Police report as Donald Ray Yancy, allegedly stole watches, hats, and a laptop from various Main Street stores.

Items allegedly taken by Yancy were valued at almost $773, according to the report. Merchandise reported stolen includes 10 watches, three of which haven’t been claimed by other merchants, a handbag, six hats and a laptop computer.

The stolen computer was found wedged under the seat of a squad car on Sunday, the report said. Officers believe Yancy concealed the laptop in his pants or near the small of his back and wedged it under the driver’s seat when placed in the vehicle, the report adds.

Police learned about the thefts after a store worker told officers a man came in and asked her to put a watch on the counter saying he wanted to buy something for his girlfriend. When she turned around the watches were missing and the man, identified as Yancy, had fled the store. Yancy allegedly stole the hats from another store on Main Street.

The report notes that when officers searched Yancy’s pockets, they discovered two other shoplifting citations from Ramsey and Dakota counties.

Yancy allegedly admitted the thefts to officers, saying he would identify the stores if they issued him a citation and released him, reports said.

Officers took Yancy to the Washington County Jail, where he was booked, cited and released. Incident reports have been forwarded to the City Attorney’s office for prosecution.