LAS CRUCES-- A woman has been arrested after Las Cruces police said she is suspected of stealing items from two retail businesses within the past month.
LCPD said Laura Margarita Valdez, 49, of the 200 block Conway Ave., has been charged with a fourth-degree felony count of shoplifting more than $500 and conspiracy to commit shoplifting.
Police that on Aug. 24 and again on Aug. 25 a woman stole several hundred dollars worth of merchandise from a Kohl's department store at 2500 N. Triviz Dr. Police said that the same woman stole nearly $750 worth of merchandise from Kohl's, ran to an awaiting vehicle, and then left with the stolen merchandise.
LCPD also learned that a similar vehicle to the one used in the Kohl's shoplifting cases was also used on Sept. 3 when a woman was seen stealing items from the Radio Shack store at the 1600 block of S. Valley Dr. A witness to that incident was able to write down the vehicle's license plate number and reported it to LCPD.
Police were then able to trace that license plate to a 1996 Toyota Camry which was found outside of Valdez's home.
The car was stopped Wednesday along El Paseo Road, and Valdez was taken into custody.
Witnesses from the Kohl's and Radio Shack cases positively identified Valdez as the suspect who shoplifted at the stores.
This case is still being investigated, and police believe Valdez had at least one accomplice during the crimes. Additional arrests are pending.
Valdez was jailed at the Dona Ana County Detention Center with a cash-only bond set at $10,000. Valdez also had six municipal court warrants for her arrest with an additional cash-only bond totaling $11,760.