State Police said they have arrested a man who was a part of a "highly organized retail theft" scheme involving smartphones. The suspect is accused of stealing from a retail chain in Middletown.

Retail theft remains a growing problem for many business owners across New York. Recently, New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced a $45 million dollar plan to combat organized retail theft. by teaming up with small business owners as part of a comprehensive statewide crackdown.

As of 2022, Governor Hochul stated that "retail theft had reached $4.4 billion in 2022, which translates into a loss of $176 million in sales taxes", according to The City. Thousands of stolen mobile phones are resold every year at online "reselling sites like Facebook Marketplace, or Craigslist".

Many purchasers have no idea they even purchased a stolen phone, according to RTF online.

New York Man Accused of Stealing From Middletown Walmart 

New York State Police said in a press release announcing the arrest of a 35-year-old Bronx man after an investigation into a highly organized retail theft of cellular phones.

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The suspect used stolen account information from cellular customers to steal Apple and Samsung smartphones from the Middletown Walmart on State Route 211, says State Police. The alleged thefts took place on several dates in February and March 2024.

See Also: New York State Woman Allegedly Stole Over $34K From Ulta Beauty Store

The suspect is accused of stealing over $33,000 worth of phones. The Bronx man was apprehended by members of the State Police working in conjunction with Walmart loss prevention targeting organized retail crimes.


He has been charged with 3rd degree Grand Larceny, and 1st degree Falsifying Business Records, which are both felonies.  He was arraigned in the Town of Mount Hope Court, released on his own recognizance, and is due back to the Town of Wallkill Court on March 20.

See Also: Lower Hudson Valley Man Steals Truck Carrying Over $30K Worth of Mike's Hard Lemonade

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Gallery Credit: Traci Taylor

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