Photo courtesy of Tuolumne County Sheriff
A Tuolumne County man was arrested for allegedly shoplifting from a business and assaulting a staff member who confronted him.
According to a press release by the Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office, deputies responded to the Tractor Supply store in Sonora on the afternoon of Thursday, January 4, to investigate a reported theft.
At the scene, store staff told deputies that a man had entered the store and left with various welding items that he had not paid for. When staff confronted the man outside and asked for the items back, he allegedly threw a metal oxygen container at one of them. The staff member reportedly caught the bottle and was not injured. The suspect then left the scene in his vehicle.
Store staff had provided a description of the vehicle and its plate number to dispatch deputies arriving on scene, and deputies later located the suspect in his vehicle in the area of Robin Hood Drive, along with what appeared to be several of the stolen items in the vehicle.
The suspect, identified as 26-year-old Robert Baldwin, was arrested and booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon and misdemeanor shoplifting. The items in the vehicle were positively identified as the stolen items in question, and were returned to Tractor Supply, the Sheriff’s Office said.
It was unclear at press time whether Baldwin had retained an attorney.
Anyone arrested on suspicion of a crime is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.