WARSAW — A North Webster man is being charged with theft after stealing chain saws from a local business.
Ray James Skelton, 50, 301 E. George St., North Webster, is being charged with two counts of theft, class A misdemeanors, each with sentence enhancements, level 6 felonies.
According to the affidavit of probable cause, officers with the Warsaw Police Department were contacted on Nov. 21 by a Lowe’s loss prevention officer.
The loss prevention officer advised they had reviewed video surveillance dated Nov. 11 and observed a subject, later identified as Skelton, placing a Husqvarna 20 inch 50 cc chain saw into a cart and then pushing the cart past all points of sale, exiting the store without paying.
The affidavit states that on Nov. 20, Lowe’s surveillance video then shows Skelton taking a Dewalt 16 inch lithium chain saw to the customer service counter where he told the clerk he did not have the receipt but wanted to return it. Skelton was given a Lowe’s gift card for $349, the value of the chain saw.
Lowe’s has no record of Skelton purchasing either chain saw.
Loss prevention identified Skelton by comparing the photo on his driver’s license to the surveillance footage and by his signature when he received the gift card.
Skelton has a previous conviction for theft in Elkhart County Superior Court on Oct. 17, 2007.
Skelton was booked in the Kosciusko County Jail on a $6,500 surety and cash bond on Feb. 2.