Thief Gets Caught After Cutting Off Edmond Police Officer

Thursday, April 3rd 2014, 10:31 pm
By: News 9

A metro man was caught on tape with stolen property and Edmond Police say he almost got away with the crime, but a mistake during his getaway landed him in the Oklahoma County Jail.

Edmond Police said Christopher French was leaving the Wal-Mart at Interstate 35 and East 15th Street the night of March 27, 2014, when he cut off an officer. The officer slowed down to avoid a collision and said he thought the temporary tags on French's car looked suspicious.

"The paper tag had been altered, you know it said it was April 14th and we weren't even in April at that point," said Jenny Monroe with Edmond Police.

The officer pulled French over at an intersection coming out of Wal-Mart and said he seemed nervous.

"Fast breathing, kept changing his story multiple times, just things weren't adding up," explained Monroe.

According to the probable cause affidavit, the officer noticed a Samsung TV still in the box visible in the backseat of the car and French did not have a receipt for the TV.

The officer said French admitted his license was suspended and when the officer ran a background check, he found a long list of convictions dating back to 1986 for larceny of merchandise from a retailer and concealing stolen property.

Wal-Mart immediately gave police surveillance video showing French in the electronics section.

The affidavit stated French, "walks into the back stockroom of the store and comes back out with a TV box."

"He goes past the registers and then there is a Wal-Mart associate that he stops and speaks to briefly. Then they push the cart out and load it into the car," Monroe said.

Edmond Police arrested French at the scene of the traffic stop.

"What this did was kind of sped up the case for us because we would have been given the video and the case from the loss prevention from Wal-Mart," Monroe added.

Because of the sheer volume of stores like Wal-Mart and Target, Edmond Police said those locations are in their top ten calls for service every year, mostly for larceny cases.