MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – On Black Friday in the Twin Cities, a large group of people stormed in and stole thousands of dollars worth of merchandise at three Best Buy locations, in what was at the time a national retail theft trend. Six people were charged on Friday in connection to the crime spree.
The Ramsey County Attorney’s Office filed felony theft charges against four adults: Nathaniel Spears, Na’touri Ross, Shaimee Robinson-Love, and Ra’Lasia Wright. Two 17-year-olds have been petitioned via summons for one count of felony theft. A felony theft charge carries a maximum sentence of 10 years, if the individual is convicted.
Officials say that more people are suspected of taking part in the crime spree but they could not be clearly identified.
The criminal complaint says that a group of about 16 people struck the Best Buy in Burnsville around 5 p.m., the one in Maplewood around 6 p.m., and one in Blaine around 8 p.m. Roughly $26,000 worth of products was stolen from the Best Buy stores in what officials called at the time a “very organized” retail theft.
A Richfield Dick’s Sporting Goods was also hit on the same day. By the time police were at each scene on Black Friday the group had already left.
NEW: Charges have been filed against several individuals involved in mass theft incidents on Black Friday.
— Nick Streiff (@nickstreiff) January 28, 2022
The criminal complaint states that officers received an anonymous tip that Wright ran a Facebook page called “Run Outs by Ralai” and had bragged about the thefts. The tipster said Wright had showed TVs, laptops, and hoverboards on Facebook Live.
The tipster provided Wright’s address on Dupont Avenue in Minneapolis, and when officers arrived, they saw a Ford Edge with Florida license plates in the driveway. The complaint states that the car was involved in the thefts, and it was towed.
Wright came out while the car was being towed, and she admitted that she was at the scene of the thefts, but denied personally stealing anything. She denied being a ringleader, and said people had met at a gas station and decided to do the thefts together.
Officers executed a search warrant on the car and found an anti-theft device inside.
“This brazen act by an organized group shocked those who witnessed it first-hand as well as the retail community and law-abiding shoppers who were out making purchases ahead of the busy holiday season,” said Ramsey County Attorney John Choi. “Bringing these individuals to justice sends a message that this type of activity will not be tolerated. Our thanks go out to our partners in law enforcement for their hard work in unraveling this complex investigation.”