Clothing Store Employee Chases Down Suspected Shoplifters

By: Kristin Haubrich Email
By: Kristin Haubrich Email

A clothing store employee in Canon City chases down two suspected shoplifters.

It happened on Monday at the Canon Western Wear store along Main Street.

It's Miranda Sandner’s job to sell jeans, but what is not in her job description is chasing off shoplifters.

“We’ve never had anything like this happen,” Sandner said.

Two people walked in the store and asked her about the jeans. But when she turned her back, she says the two tried to scoop up nearly 30 pairs and make a break for it. Sandner wasn't going to let them get away with it.

“He was halfway out the door, and I grabbed his shirt and held him back a little bit,” Sandner explained.

The suspect made it outside, then attempted to jump in the getaway car--but with the help of a passerby, Steven Witte, Sandner was able to tackle and take him down.

“Held the guy down until officers got there,” Sandner said.

That suspect was later identified as Jeremy Molina, 23.

While fellow employees call her brave, Sandner says she was just doing her job to defend the store.

“I wouldn’t consider myself a hero, it’s just my nature of reacting like that, but probably my boss does.”

Detectives later found the suspect vehicle at Veterans Park with two women inside. They are identified as Frances Romero, 24, and Jennifer Sanchez, 25.

According to the police report, Romero told interviewers she and Molina had asked Sanchez to drive them to Canon City to go to the mountains. She said they had only a vague plan for what they would do in the store.

Sanchez told police that she didn’t think anything was strange when Molina asked for a ride. According to the report, she claimed to believe Romero and Molina went into the store to get something to eat. The next thing she knew, they were running out to the car and yelling at her to drive away.

Molina reportedly told the officers that the theft was a “spur of the moment thing,” because he needed money to get drugs. The report indicates he admitted to doing some meth, pills and heroin.

Police say that all three suspects were also found to have outstanding arrest warrants. There is also an active protection order to keep Molina away from Romero.

Molina and Romero are charged with burglary, shoplifting and conspiracy. Molina is also charged with violating the protection order.

Sanchez is charged with conspiracy and possession of drug paraphernalia for a glass pipe found in the car.

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