ROCK HILL — A Chester County man who police say tried to steal a deer stand and other items from a Rock Hill Walmart was arrested when he punched a loss prevention employee who tried to stop him form leaving the store on Friday.
At about 10:30 a.m., police were dispatched to the Dave Lyle Walmart after receiving calls about a shoplifter wearing blue jean shorts and a plaid white and beige shirt who was trying to leave the store with $553 worth of merchandise, including a pressure washer, compressor, socket sets and a deer stand, according to a Rock Hill police report.
A loss prevention employee told police that the suspect, identified as Ricky Charles Huffstetler Jr., 27, loaded the items in a shopping cart and tried to leave the store before he and another loss prevention employee approached him, the report states. Huffstetler punched the other employee on the left side of his face, making his glasses fall off, and then ran into the bushes next to the store.
The employees saw Huffstetler get into a green Ford Expedition that left the parking lot, the report states. Police found and stopped the car in the area between Dave Lyle Boulevard and Springdale Road and took Huffstetler into custody.
The car’s driver, a woman, told police that Huffstetler called her saying he lost the car keys and needed her to pick him up “in the bushes near Walmart,” the report states. Police charged Huffstetler with shoplifting and third-degree assault and battery.
At the jail, Huffstetler told officers he hid in the bushes because loss prevention personnel “jumped on him,” the report states. He told police he was shopping in the garden center when the store employees approached him.
He denied stealing and told authorities he did not punch the employee, the report states. He told police he hid in the bushes so he could get away from the store.
He was released from jail Friday on a $3,000 bond.