LYNDHURST TOWNSHIP, NJ – A police officer played an educated guess and caught a fleeing thief who had just stolen $850 worth of merchandise from a local supermarket, sources report.
Police Chief Richard Jarvis was driving on Page Avenue around 12:30 p.m. Wednesday when a vehicle sped up behind his patrol car.
Jarvis pulled over the speeding vehicle, which was driven by 36-year-old Matthew Hemphill.
Hemphill had a large duffel bag filled with energy drinks and candy he claimed to have bought from Costco without any proof or receipt.
Jarvis dispatched detectives to the nearby store and found a surveillance video of Hemphill stuffing his duffel bag as he pushed the shopping cart.
At around the same time, the store had dispatched police for an unrelated disturbance and Hemphill, assuming they were there for him, fled the scene.
Hemphill was charged with shoplifting, and issued summons for tailgating and driving while suspended.
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