Serial shoplifter accused of costing retailers more than $125k arrested on Thanksgiving
A man well-known to major Minnesota-based retailers such as Best Buy and Target was arrested on Thanksgiving, according to a police report obtained by 5 INVESTIGATES.
But it wasn’t his appetite for expensive electronics that put him on law enforcement’s radar this time.
Minneapolis police officers arrested Angelo M. Wagner, Jr. for domestic assault on Thursday morning. Wagner, 34, had multiple warrants out for his arrest after failing to appear at court hearings related to several theft charges.
As 5 INVESTIGATES reported last week, Wagner is well-known among some of the country’s largest retail chains. Police records show Wagner is accused of stealing at least $125,000 worth of merchandise from Target and hitting at least 26 stores in Minnesota over a two-month period in 2021.
Surveillance video obtained by 5 INVESTIGATES shows Wagner cutting iPhones from a Target display, grabbing a PlayStation 5 from a locked storage room at another Target, and walking out of a Best Buy with several laptops.
Wagner is currently facing charges for shoplifting from a Walmart in Blaine, a Target in Plymouth and a Best Buy in Eden Prairie.
The Minneapolis man is emblematic of a larger problem facing retailers across the country, new research shows. A study from the Council on Criminal Justice found more than 95% of shoplifting cases across the U.S. involve just one or two people.
“Eventually, it’ll impact us because Best Buy might have, let’s say, $50,000 in losses. Well, someone has to make up that amount somehow,” Eagan Det. Dan Spiess said.
Organized retail crime, which includes everything from exchanges at cash registers to planned cargo theft, cost businesses $112 billion, according to a recent study from the National Retail Federation. The average value of merchandise stolen by a “booster” before an arrest is $5,000, the study found.
Minneapolis police arrested Wagner last week after officers responded to a reported domestic abuse in progress at a home on 15th Street E around 8:30 a.m. on Thanksgiving, according to an MPD report. The report does not provide any other details.
Court records show Wagner is being held on a $10,000 bond with no conditions. The judge also issued a domestic abuse no-contact order.
Wagner’s next hearing is scheduled for Dec. 7.