Ariz. corrections officer arrested after alleged shoplifting spree

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Hugo Rivera By Jennifer Thomas Hugo Rivera By Jennifer Thomas
By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas
By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas
By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

SAN TAN VALLEY, Ariz. – An employee with the Arizona Department of Corrections is accused of shoplifting from a Wal-Mart store on several occasions while his young daughter was with him.

Hugo Rivera, 32, of San Tan Valley, was arrested and booked into the Pinal County Jail on three felony counts each of theft, burglary and organized retail theft.

According to the Pinal County Sheriff's Office, Rivera allegedly shoplifted at the Wal-Mart store located on West Hunt Highway in San Tan Valley three separate times within a two-week period.

In each of the incidents, Rivera pushed a loaded grocery cart full of merchandise out of the store, making no attempt to pay for the items, according to PCSO spokesman Jim Knupp. He also had his 4-year-old daughter with him during the course of each theft.

Knupp said the items included linens, detergent, dish soap, wine, beer and small appliances.

After apprehending Rivera following a shoplifting attempt on Tuesday, store associates told deputies that Rivera had signed and dated a trespass notice in June, prohibiting him from entering any property owned by Wal-Mart, following two shoplifting incidents at a store at Greenfield Road and U.S. 60 in Mesa.

The approximate value of the merchandise believed to have been removed from the San Tan Valley store totaled nearly $1,100.

Rivera was employed as a corrections officer in Florence. He resigned his position, according to Doug Nick with the Arizona Department of Corrections.