Crime Stoppers: Escalating charges

Crime Stoppers: Escalating charges

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Shoplifting frozen pizzas is no big crime. But tussling with a security guard is.

One young crook made a big mistake.

This happened at the new Publix Market in Charlotte's SouthEnd. Just after noon, store surveillance shows us a young man wearing a distinctive red hood and decorative tights entering the store.

He's got a backpack on and that's drawn the attention of a plain-dressed woman who's actually a loss prevention officer.

"The whole thing is they're dressed down in casual clothes so you wouldn't know she's not there to shop," said Detective Tori Roddey.

She keeps her eye on the young man while he walks down the frozen foods aisle. He's seen reaching in and pulling out several frozen pizzas, sticking them in his backpack, and then starting to leave the store.

We can also see the loss prevention woman giving chase. When he passes the cash registers - a sign he wasn't going to pay for his items - she confronts him.

The confrontation is over in a blink. He shoves her hard to the floor, knocking off her glasses and a shoe.

"Actually went from a simple larceny or shoplifting to strong armed robbery," Detective Roddey said. "Any time you grab something by force, that takes it to a whole another level."

Detective Roddey says once outside the store, the young man was last seen headed to the light rail station nearby.

He's got long braids, wearing a red hoodie, tight pants with decorative designs and green sneakers.

Know him? Call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600. You won't have to leave your name and you could take home a reward.

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