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Women accused of stealing 84 pairs of jeans from Cottage Grove store

Three women face felony charges after they allegedly stole more than 80 pairs of jeans and other clothing from the Cottage Grove Kohl's store.

The women - two from Minneapolis, one from St. Paul - and two juvenile females stuffed dozens of pairs of jeans into shopping bags and loaded them into a car before being stopped by police, according to criminal complaints filed in Washington County District Court.

Washington County prosecutors filed one count of aiding and abetting-theft against each of the three adult suspects: Caswana K. Miles, 23, of St. Paul, and Antenese S. Baker, 18, and Lasonya D. Miles, 24, both of Minneapolis.

According to Cottage Grove police and the criminal complaints:

A loss-prevention officer at Kohl's, 7990 Hardwood Ave., called police shortly before 9 p.m. Nov. 17 to report suspected shoplifters in the store. The officer watched the women load merchandise into carts and believed they were going to leave the store.

Outside, a Cottage Grove police officer reported watching the women load bags of merchandise into the trunk of a vehicle and attempt to drive away. The officer stopped the vehicle.

All three women spoke to police and admitted taking jeans and other merchandise. Lasonya Miles told police she stole jeans and other clothing for her brothers and child's father, the complaint said.

One juvenile said she helped steal the clothing while the other said she didn't steal anything.

In all, approximately 84 pairs of jeans, mostly Levi's brand, were taken, along with other merchandise, according to a police report. Surveillance video shows the women and one juvenile walking throughout the store and loading merchandise into a cart and then entering a men's fitting room with two carts of clothing. The other juvenile stood watch. The suspects then exited the fitting room carrying bags full of merchandise.

The merchandise was valued at $4,717.99.

The felony theft charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine. Bail for the women was set at $10,000.

Scott Wente

Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011.

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