BY ROBERT L. BAKER
Wyoming County Press Examiner
Three Luzerne County residents have been charged in a Dec. 8 theft from the Eaton Township Walmart that has implications for additional thefts at three different Walmart stores.
Walmart Asset Protection Services told police that Joseph Jonathon Onzik, 34, of Swoyersville, attempted to leave the Eaton Twp. store on Dec. 8 around 2:20 in the afternoon with a 40-inch TV, blue ray player, Wii gaming system and other items with a retail value of $!1,372.
According to court records, Onzik was seen entering a white Merecedes then fled it on foot while an observer was able to write down the license plate number.
The vehicle fled north on Rt. 29, and a traffic stop was initiated by state police at its intersection with the Rt. 6 bypass, in which a driver, Travis Aubrey Humphrey, 25, of Plymouth, and a passenger, Tabitha A. Fierson, 22, of Wilkes-Barre, were taken into custody.
According to court records, earlier surveillance showed the three in Walmart with Humphrey and Frierson tapping on merchandise they allegedly wanted Onzik to put in his cart.
Some items were selected because they didn’t have security tags on them. In other selections, court records say that Onzik was observed on the cell phone allegedly receiving instructions about what items to put in his cart.
Police noted that the Mercedes used was also positively identified with a retail theft on Dec. 1 at the Eaton Twp. Walmart, with a retail theft Dec. 3 at the Taylor Walmart and with a retail theft at the Pittston Walmart on Dec. 5.
All three were arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Carl Smith and lodged in the Wyoming County jail.
State police said that Onzik had also been wanted by the Kingston police for robbery.
They are all scheduled for a preliminary hearing before Judge Smith on Dec. 26.
Onzik faces misdemeanor charges in Wyoming County of receiving stolen property, retail theft, and criminal conspiracy to commit retail theft.
Both Humhrey and Frierson face two misdemeanor charges each of criminal conspiracy to commit retail theft.