WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — A woman faces a felony charge after an attempted theft of less than $30 of hygiene products from a Texas Walmart on Lawrence Road turned violent.
Gatoria Lashai Owens, 20, of Wichita Falls, was charged with robbery following the incident on Monday, August 15, 2022. She was released from the Wichita County Jail on Tuesday, August 16, after posting her $15,000 bond.
According to police, officers were dispatched to the Walmart on Lawrence just before 5 p.m. on Monday. Dispatch advised responding officers the suspect was physically hitting the reporting party and attempting to leave the building.
According to the arrest affidavit, when officers arrived on the scene, they located the suspect later identified as Owens, and detained her.
An employee with asset protection showed officers surveillance footage of Owens at a self-checkout machine placing items into bags that were not scanned.
According to the affidavit, the total value of the items that were not paid for was $29.29. Sgt. Charlie Eipper, Public Information Officer for the Wichita Falls Police Department, said the items were feminine care items and personal hygiene products.
After passing all points of sale, Owens was stopped by the asset protection employee and taken to the asset protection office.
Police said surveillance footage showed Owens and the employee begin to argue. They said Owens hit the employee in the face with a closed fist, then pushed the employee with open hands as she exited the office.
Because of the assault on the employee in the process of theft, Owens was charged with robbery, a second-degree felony.