07/10/09 — Arrests made in theft ring at local Target

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Arrests made in theft ring at local Target

By Nick Hiltunen
Published in News on July 10, 2009 1:46 PM

A new law that took effect in 2007 means a Selma man and his alleged accomplice might face felony charges for a series of thefts from Target on Sunburst Drive, police said.

Organized retail theft, a Class H felony, is defined as taking more than $1,500 in goods from a retailer in a period of less than 90 days.

Goldsboro police say Tristan Phillip Hines, 23, of Shoe Hill Road, who was already in Wayne County Jail for similar Nash County charges, stole about $6,400 worth of goods intended for sale at Target.

Investigator Dwayne Bevell reported the dates of theft were between Sept. 7, 2008, and March 9, 2009.

The investigator said Christopher Duane Whitley, who is currently serving a Department of Correction sentence that began in April, also was charged.

Police did not detail specific numbers of counts, but said both men faced "numerous" felony- and misdemeanor-level theft charges.

Goldsboro police have made avid use of the Senate bill that enabled felony charges for organized retail theft and receiving stolen goods, investigators said.

Charges involving Gold City Pawn and Quality Jewelry and Pawn employees in December 2008 were also enabled by the law, authorities said.

Bevell did not immediately return a phone call before the newspaper's deadline.