PCSO: 'Habitual thief' Michael Lopez connected to 14 burglaries at Arizona Walmart stores

SAN TAN VALLEY - An Arizona man has been arrested for being a 'habitual thief,' according to authorities.

Sgt. Pat Ramirez, spokesman for the Pinal County Sheriff's Office, said 41-year-old Michael Lopez was arrested Friday, May 9, on several counts of burglary and organized retail theft involving a San Tan Valley Walmart.

PCSO said Lopez was witnessed filling a shopping cart with over $700 worth of merchandise and then walking out to his truck. Lopez fled when an officer approached, but was eventually apprehended.

Police said Lopez has connections to 14 thefts from local Walmarts in San Tan Valley, Mesa and Apache Junction. The most recent, according to PCSO, was on April 22 in which $554.78 of merchandise was taken and not recovered.

Lopez reportedly admitted to authorities about his involvement in all these Walmart thefts, according to Ramirez.

Lopez faces six counts of burglary and six counts of organized retail theft. More charges of burglary, shoplifting and trespassing have been filed with the Pinal County Attorney's Office related to the April 22 incident.

The suspect has already served time for previous thefts and shopliftings out of Pinal, Gila and Maricopa counties, according to PCSO.

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