Serial shoplifter accused of stealing thousands of dollars worth of circuit breakers from Home Depot

Wednesday, February 21, 2024
Serial shoplifter accused of stealing circuit breakers from Home Depot
Bensalem police warning about serial shoplifter accused of stealing from Home Depot stores

BENSALEM, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Police in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, are looking for a suspect they say stole thousands of dollars worth of electrical supplies from retail stores over the past month.

Bensalem Township police have put out surveillance pictures of a man wanted for stealing nearly $9,000 worth of goods from area Home Depots since January.

"It looked like he wheeled it in in a suitcase. And I couldn't believe, they couldn't stop him," said Mary Kate Cancelliere, who lives in the township.

That's exactly what surveillance cameras caught the suspect doing: using a suitcase to steal circuit breakers. It's one of three theft instances police say tie back to him at the two Home Depot stores in Bensalem.

IMAGE: Police in Bensalem, Pa., say this man is accused of stealing thousands of dollars worth of electrical supplies from Home Depot stores.

Investigators say the crime spree started on January 27 at a store on Rockhill Drive. Using a reusable bag, the suspect stole more than $2,000 in electrical supplies, according to investigators.

The next day, police say he was caught on camera across town at the store on Bristol Pike, loading this suitcase with more than $6,000 in stolen goods.

Finally, on February 12, he was seen back on Rockhill Drive stealing more equipment, each time, leaving in either a white SUV or white Mazda.

"They know what to steal, what not to steal. They seem to have a list of hot items," said Sonny Collins, a retail worker in the township. He says he sees retail theft nearly every shift.

"They catch the bus up here from Philadelphia," he said of the crime pattern, "and they just wreak havoc in this area."

Bensalem police say there's been a 30% increase in crime over the past two years, leading some stores to put up signs from police warning people that retail theft will be prosecuted in the township.

IMAGE: Police are investigating a series of thefts from Home Depot stores in Bensalem, Pa.

"It's sad on the companies. It's sad for the families, and for these children who are actually ruining their lives," said Nora Jordan from Woodhaven.

Shoppers say the crime trend hurts everyone.

"I think it's a sad state of affairs when you can't grab a thing of tide without calling the manager to come unlock it," Cancelliere.

To try to combat retail theft, police and businesses are partnering up for a campaign called "Bensalem Secure," warning thieves of the consequences of shoplifting.