Leawood police are investigating a shoplifting incident that ended with the assault of a loss prevention officer. They believe the same man was involved in a similar shoplifting case at a Kansas City, MO, mall.
"This was a pretty good brawl. It went on for a while," said Capt. Kevin Cauley of the Leawood Police Department.
The incident happened at the Macy's at Town Center Plaza. Surveillance video from Feb. 27 shows a man in the female purses section of the retailer. A loss prevention officer also said he spotted the man and, as he kept an eye on him, the officer said he saw the man pull out pliers and cut the security wire that held the purses in place.
About 45 seconds later the man snatches nine Michael Kors purses valued at more than $2,600 and heads to the entrance.
But the loss prevention officer was waiting for the man in the vestibule and a fight broke out.
"The suspect actually lost his jacket and glasses in the fight and the victim had a bloodied nose. It went on for quite some time," Cauley said.
At one point the thief pepper sprayed the officer several times, making it impossible for the officer to see. As the officer still hung onto the suspect, the suspect's partner runs inside to help. The second suspect threatened to shoot the officer and the officer eventually lets the suspects go.
"The fact that weapons are now being involved really ups the ante a little bit and scares everybody including us," Cauley said.
Police believe the same suspect was involved in a similar crime at Metro North Mall in Kansas City, MO, a couple of weeks prior. They ask that anyone with information or who recognizes the man in the surveillance video to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS.
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Tuesday, September 2 2014 8:44 PM EDT2014-09-03 00:44:29 GMT
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