NJ fugitive stole $3,600 worth of Star Wars Legos to fund cocaine habit, cops say
The force was not strong with one New Jersey fugitive who was caught stealing thousands of dollars in Star Wars Lego sets from a Florida Toys 'R' Us in order to fund his cocaine addiction, police say.
Shannon Kirkley, a 35-year-old man from East Orange, was arrested after being caught on surveillance video smuggling 12 Lego sets, each valued at more than $300, out of the West Chapel store in Florida, the Pasco County Sheriff's Office said.
Kirkley removed a toy chest from its box and stuffed the Lego sets into the toy chest, authorities said. He proceeded to checkout with the toy chest, but did not pay for the Lego sets, they said.
Toys "R" Us employees had seen Kirkley removing the the security tags from the Lego sets and called the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, which then arrested Kirkley at the store, the sheriff's office said.
After the arrest, Kirkley admitted to deputies that buys cocaine with the money he makes selling Lego sets, the sheriff's office said.
Kirkley is suspected of stealing Star War Lego items from across the county. Toys "R" Us had previously sent a "be-on-the-lookout" alert for Kirkley to law enforcement agencies in the Tampa Bay area and New Jersey, police said.
"Toys 'R' Us had already known about him and had been keeping an eye on him from all the different stores he already hit," Melanie Snow, public information officer for Pasco County, told New Jersey 101.5.
Kirkley was charged with retail grand theft, resisting an officer and possession of cocaine and paraphernalia. He has a New Jersey arrest warrant for allegedly violating probation, but Snow said he will not face extradition. He'd previously been arrested and charged with resisting arrest in Essex County.