Three alleged thieves with a shared address in Stoneham were arrested over the weekend after reportedly pilfering product from one local pharmacy and attempting to return it to another.
According to a police incident report, the attempted scheme played out around 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 5, and resulted in the arrest of three men on multiple charges, including larceny, conspiracy and attempting to commit a crime.
Daniel Steven Ellis, 44, of 8 Colonial Court, Stoneham, was charged with receiving stolen property less than $250, attempting to commit a crime and conspiracy; Randall Joseph Hanson, 54, of 8 Colonial Court, Stoneham, was charged with receiving stolen property less than $250 and conspiracy, and Joseph Louis Puccio, 59, of 8 Colonial Court, Stoneham, was charged with receiving stolen property $250 or less, larceny of property $250 or less and conspiracy.
The chain of events leading up to the arrest began in the parking lot outside of on Bedford Street, where an officer noticed a man leave the store with a box but no bag and hurry to a suspicious white Maxima. The officer then followed the car to the in Lexington Center, where another man allegedly exited and entered the store carrying the box of over-the-counter pills into the store, a police spokesman said.
With the one man inside the store, police spoke with the two men inside the vehicle and determined they had been shoplifting in the Lexington area and were attempting to return the stolen products. Inside the store, the third man was allegedly attempting to return a $31 box of over-the-counter pills and a $30 skin oil treatment, police said.
According to the police report, it appears Puccio executed the initial theft, Hanson was the driver and Ellis attempted the return in Lexington Center.
It’s not an uncommon practice for shoplifters to attempt to return stolen items for cash or store credit, according to Lt. Jim Barry, a spokesman for the . This kind of rouse often occurs at a pharmacy like a CVS or Walgreens, and involves pharmaceutical products in the $30 range.
Information in this report was provided by the Lexington Police Department. An arrest does not indicate a conviction.