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Columbia Press

Police and Public Safety

Man arrested for auto theft after taking Walmart scooter

Friday, August 10, 2018

A man who used one of Walmart’s motorized carts for his personal transportation discovered he’d committed a fairly serious crime.

Raymond Clark Heath, 66, of Astoria was arrested on suspicion of vehicle theft on Monday, July 27.

The electric scooters are worth $900 and considered motor vehicles under Oregon law. Walmart employees called police about 11:30 a.m. when a shopper told them they’d witnessed a man riding one of their carts down Highway 101, according to a police report.

Police searched the area and eventually found the scooter parked on the side of Alternate Highway 101 west of Ensign Lane near the Skipanon River Bridge, about a half mile from Walmart. Officers could hear voices in the nearby brush and found three men.

“I asked which one of them drove the scooter from Walmart to its resting location,” the officer wrote in his report. “The older male subject raised his hand and said he did.”

Heath told officers he didn’t intend to steal the scooter, but was borrowing it until after his nap, when he planned to take it back to the store, according to the report.

A records check on Heath showed he had a contempt of court warrant in Warrenton for failing to show up in court on a previous shoplifting offense. He also had two warrants through Clatsop County Circuit Court.

Heath was placed in handcuffs and taken to Clatsop County Jail, where he was booked for unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, second-degree theft and another count of contempt of court.

A Walmart employee retrieved the scooter. Walmart security also asked police to ban him from their store.

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