Walmart TV thefts: armed robbery, organized retail crime charges filed

JOLIET, IL – A 48-year-old woman from Joliet’s 500 block of Wilcox Street is charged with armed robbery, aggravated robbery, robbery, burglary, aggravated battery and organized retail crime in connection with the theft of two televisions from Joliet’s 2424 Walmart store W. Jefferson St.

Back on January 16 Joann Mendez Gonzales stolen televisions in the presence of a male Walmart employee “by threatening the imminent use of force while carrying a knife or otherwise armed with a dangerous weapon, a knife,” according to her indictment.

She is also accused of pushing the Walmart employee during her crimes. The organized retail crime indictment states that Mendez-Gonzales “knowingly shoplifted … from Walmart in collusion with another person.”

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On Wednesday, Joliet Patch reached out to Joliet Police Department spokesman Dwayne English for more details about the January crime.

So far, Gonzales is the only person taken into custody. Her total bail remains at $140,000.

Find out what’s happening in Jolietwith free, real-time updates from Patch.

According to English:

  • At 6:25 p.m. on January 16, Joliet police were sent to Walmart on Jefferson for shoplifting.
  • Officers found that a man and a woman had packed two televisions in their cart and walked out of the Walmart without paying.
  • An employee tried to stop the thieves by grabbing their cart, and then the woman punched him in the chest and pointed a pocketknife at him, threatening to stab him.
  • A second Walmart employee tried to chase the thieves into the parking lot.
  • When the employee tried to take the televisions from her cart, her accomplice hit him and threatened to stab him. The man reached for his pocket, but did not pull out a knife.
  • The man and woman drove off in their vehicle with the stolen TVs.
  • Over the next few days, Joliet detectives identified Mendez-Gonzales as the female suspect. An arrest warrant was issued on March 3.
  • Mendez-Gonzales was already in Will County Jail on previous charges, and Walmart’s charges were added.
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