Couple accused in fake Walmart receipt scheme - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Couple accused in fake Walmart receipt scheme

James Edward Jefferson and his girlfriend, Olivia Rochelle Howard, were arrested at the Columbia Walmart Thursday. James Edward Jefferson and his girlfriend, Olivia Rochelle Howard, were arrested at the Columbia Walmart Thursday.

COLUMBIA, MS (WDAM) - Columbia police officers say they've busted an elaborate shoplifting and receipt fraud operation that targeted 20 Walmart stores in at least 18 cities.

Detective Mike Cooper with the Columbia Police Department said the male and female team traveled from Walmart to Walmart and cost the stores tens of thousands of dollars.

James Edward Jefferson and his girlfriend, Olivia Rochelle Howard, were arrested at the Columbia Walmart Thursday on multiple charges including felony shoplifting, felony conspiracy to shoplift and receipt fraud.

"[Howard] had a big grin on her face counting her cash and she said hello and I told her she was under arrest. It wiped the smile right off her face," Cooper said.

After the duo was taken into custody, a host of equipment used to fraudulently manufacture Walmart receipts was found in a Jeep with Pike County plates.

"They had a mobile receipt station in their vehicle. They had laptop computers with wifi, copiers, and printers in the vehicle with them. They were actually printing their own receipts," Cooper said.

Receipts were found from Wal-Mart stores in Oxford, Jackson, Madison, Laurel, Columbia, New Orleans, Sulfur and even as far away as Houston.

Cooper said the scheme didn't just cost Walmart.

"This is costing you and I every time we walk into a store and buy something," Cooper said.

Police say each of the Walmart stores could press charges against the pair.

Copyright 2013 WDAM. All rights reserved.

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