Family members identify woman who jumped into pond after being chased from store

TAMPA, Fla. - A dive team from Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office was called to University Square Mall on Tuesday afternoon after a suspected shoplifter jumped into a pond and disappeared.

The female suspect had been detained in a parking lot near Burlington Coat Factory by two loss prevention employees from Sears in the mall on Fowler Avenue.  She was being escorted back to the store office when she turned and ran.  The employees followed her and watched as she waded into a retention pond until she was chest-deep.

The employees momentarily turned away. When they looked back, she was gone. They were not able to say if she went under water or was able to conceal herself in nearby bushes.

After recognizing the suspect in photos shown on ABC Action News, a family member brought Kenia K. Lee to deputies late Tuesday night, where she was arrested and booked into Orient Road Jail.

Lee was charged with petit theft and violation of probation.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's office plans to petition the court system for Lee to cover the investigative costs, which included activating the dive team. The cost was nearly $5,000.

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