Local News

Man, woman accused of shoplifting for fake refunds

— A man and a woman have been accused of stealing items from Lowe’s and then returning the merchandise to get refunds, according to a report released Friday.

Jennifer L. Barton, 29, and John Wayne Barton, 33, both of 604 Bill Head St., Avon Park, were arrested by the Highlands County Sheriff’s Office in connection with those thefts, reports say. Authorities do say whether the two are married.

Jennifer Barton was charged with shoplifting and dealing in stolen property. John Barton was charged with retail theft.

John Barton, the report says, worked as an assistant manager of Lowe’s. During that employment, John Barton was observed on four different occasions taking items from the store without paying, the report said.

John Barton was also observed going to the rear of the store, exiting and passing those items under a chain link fence to someone with a Chrysler mini van.

Barton would later return the items and receive gift cards, the report said. The total value of items taken on April 16, May 27, May 30 and June 16 was $421.70, the report said.

Jennifer Barton, the report said, was observed on May 30 taking two items and then, without paying for them, heading toward customer service and receiving gift cards for returning the merchandise.

The report said on June 16, she returned other stolen items for gift cards.


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