Worker tied to theft
By By Lydia Grimes
Brewton police last week arrested an auto parts store worker and charged him with second-degree theft of property, the third arrest of an employee on theft charges related to his or her place of business.
Kevin McNeil, 21, of Brewton, was arrested Monday after an investigation at O’Reilly Auto Parts revealed the theft of more than $1,200.
Police investigator Sgt. Steven Ferguson said the amount is smaller than two previous employee-related theft cases but police are remaining vigilant for more incidents.
In the latest case, O’Reilly loss prevention manager Cody Russell told told Brewton police late last month about thefts that had taken place at the business. The store had noticed a shortness in inventory and believed the thefts had taken place from Oct. 1, 2009 through January.
Employees suspected McNeil, police said, because of the number of customer refunds he had filed.
McNeil would file refunds on items that were never returned and pocket the money, police said.
When questioned by store officials, McNeil confessed to the thefts of funds which added up to a total of $1,288, police said. McNeil reported to the police department, where he was questioned by police and confessed again, officers said.
McNeil was booked into the Escambia County jail, where he paid $5,000 bond and was released.
Also in January, police arrested Mary Beth Shell on charges of first-degree theft of property. Police said Shell had taken about $100,000 over the course of a year from her employer, Special Touch Restoration.
And police also charged Judith “Jill” Overstreet Goolsby with first-degree theft of property. Goolsby had worked at Milligan’s, a UPS dropoff spot, where police said she was able to intercept two packages of gold jewelry which she then sold elsewhere. The items in the packages amounted to about $45,000 worth of gold.