MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Two Minneapolis women are facing serious charges stemming from a shoplifting incident at Burlington Coat Factory and a crash that damaged a squad car.
Angela Sue Nelson, 36, was charged with first-degree criminal damage to property, a felony, and obstructing the legal process, which is a gross misdemeanor. Teresa Rae Cloud, 33, faces charges of possession of shoplifting gear, a felony, and also obstructing the legal process in connection to the March 18 incident.
According to the criminal complaint, West St. Paul Police were called to a theft in progress at the Burlington Coat Factory in West St. Paul. Upon arrival, an officer saw Cloud – who matched the description of the theft suspect – run out of the store and enter a tan Mercury Sable.
The driver, Nelson, was slumped over as if she were sleeping. As the officer walked toward the vehicle, Cloud spoke to Nelson, who looked up and shifted the vehicle out of park and ignored demands of the officer to stop. Nelson then drove the car around the parking lot, but ended up crashing into a squad car of another officer who came to help, according to the complaint.
The impact stalled Nelson’s car and the two were arrested. During Cloud’s arrest, officers saw her throw wire cutters from the passenger side window.
Loss prevention told police that Cloud entered the store, grabbed a wire basket, selected a purse and went around the store collecting other items. She then removed wire cutters from her person and cut the security tags off the items she was collecting and placing them inside the new purse. She then fled the store when loss prevention attempted to stop her, the complaint said.
In the backseat of the Sable, police found the items that Cloud had allegedly stolen.
The total damage to the squad car was $1,300.
If convicted, Nelson could face more than five years in prison and Cloud could face more than three years.