Updated:
Original:

Woman arrested for stealing $9,000 worth of Wal-Mart DVDs

Author:

A 28-year-old woman was arrested and charged with stealing more than $9,000 worth of DVDs from Fargo-area Wal-Mart stores, Forum News Service reports.

According to KVRR, court documents say Samantha Velez-Diaz – a Mexican national now living in Los Angeles – would position herself between store alarm units and act as a decoy, while a male cohort walked out with the DVDs. The thefts took place in 2012, at stores in Dilworth and Fargo.

Forum reports Wal-Mart employees notified police of missing DVDs in April of that year. The court documents say a man and woman were caught on surveillance tape working together to steal the discs.

A month earlier, Forum says, South Dakota state troopers pulled over Velez-Diaz and another man. The duo had a large quantity of DVDs with Wal-Mart tags, and neither could produce a receipt – leading investigators to think those DVDs may have been taken from a store in Vermillion, South Dakota.

KVRR says the operation may have stretched much farther – police believe the two stole a total of $100,000 worth of merchandise from Wal-Mart stores in five different states.

Velez-Diaz was arrested Tuesday. She's charged with aiding and abetting a theft, a felony. If convicted, she could face up to 10 years in prison.

Back in 2007, the Associated Press reported Wal-Mart was losing $3 billion a year from thefts. Former employees told the AP the number of security members on staff had been reduced. Just last year, the Wal-mart store in Stapleton, Colorado lost $1.5 million to theft – putting it in the retailer's most-shoplifted bracket, the Denver Post reported.

Large-scale DVD theft has even hit libraries. Late last year, 22-year-old Nhia Vue of St. Paul was accused of using fake library cards to steal video games and DVDs from Ramsey County libraries. Authorities say Vue created library cards for 24 imaginary children, and checked out 50 video games, 41 DVDs, and 21 books over a period of three weeks in the summer of 2013. The items were valued at about $4,100.

“I didn’t look at it as stealing,” Vue said at the time. “I looked at it as borrowing. I thought I could pay them back on my taxes.”

Next Up

Flickr - minneapolis police officer close-up belt camera - Tony Webster

What happens if Mpls. public safety question passes? City memo provides answers

The memo was sent to the mayor and council members Tuesday morning.

Wild

COVID-19 hits Minnesota Wild coaching staff

The Wild will be shorthanded for Tuesday night's game in Vancouver.

Anthony Edwards

Ant takes alpha role after bad loss: 'We need to lock the f*** in'

The Timberwolves' rising star was not happy after Monday's loss to the Pelicans.

parker eisinger

Lakeville football player diagnosed with cancer week before playoffs

The tenth-grader was diagnosed with a form of cancer most commonly found in people aged 65 and older.

University of Minnesota peeping tom suspect

Someone keeps trying to film showering women at U of M

The university has received three reports in the past two weeks.

john Fluevog shoes 1

John Fluevog Shoes closes its Uptown Minneapolis store

The brand could return to the Twin Cities one day.

sidecar drink

Sidecar — Town Hall's new cocktail lounge — is officially open in Minneapolis

It's the fifth Town Hall location, but the first to focus on cocktails.

Screen Shot 2019-07-18 at 9.10.30 AM

Here's where DFLers stand on Minneapolis' public safety ballot question

The question would create a Department of Public Safety and remove some requirements.

Arthur Kollie

Man pleads guilty to brutal murder of 14-year-old girl in Fargo

The 14-year-old girl was the victim of a random attack outside a Fargo strip mall.

Minneapolis Mayoral Candidates 2021 - jacob frey sheila nezhad kate knuth

Here's who has endorsed the frontrunners for Minneapolis mayor

Politicians and community groups are voicing their opinions.

covid

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Tuesday, October 26

The latest data for the pandemic in Minnesota.

Related