Phoenix PD: Accused shoplifter used daughter as shield

Posted: Updated:
By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman
By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman

PHOENIX -- A 39-year-old Scottsdale man was arrested on suspicion of shoplifting less than $24 in merchandise from a grocery store while using his daughter as a shield, Phoenix police said.

Thomas Williams was arrested Sunday afternoon at a Food City grocery store at 4430 E. McDowell Road by Phoenix police after he was caught by a store loss prevention agent with items totaling $23.88, according to the arresting officer's probable cause statement.

Police said Williams placed his daughter between him and the agent during the confrontation.

Williams told officers he paid for some ramen noodles, but didn't pay for items he put in a backpack because he was a single father, according to the statement.

He also told police he had previously shoplifted at other stores while his daughter was with him.

Police said Williams has previous convictions for domestic violence, assault, aggravated assault, threats, dangerous drugs, marijuana, theft, more than two convictions for shoplifting and trespassing.

He was booked into the Maricopa County Fourth Avenue Jail on one count of felony shoplifting and one count of felony child abuse.