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Deputies: Man in wheelchair asked to be wheeled out of Kmart with stolen TV

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Posted at 8:19 PM, Oct 01, 2014
and last updated 2014-10-04 18:00:15-04

A man in a wheelchair was arrested Tuesday at a Golden Gate Kmart after asking another customer to wheel him to the exit with a stolen flat screen TV on his lap, authorities say.

Robert Domingo Rodriguez, 30, is accused of stealing a total of 48 items worth $1,396.

Security officers at the Kmart at 4955 Golden Gate Parkway said they saw Rodriguez putting merchandise in his pants as he moved around the store. At one point, Rodriguez asked a customer to put a TV on his lap, then attempted to bite off the security device, according to an arrest report.

Deputies said Rodriguez moved out to the garden section, where he readjusted the items in his pants. Without paying for the merchandise, he asked another customer to wheel him out of the store, according to the report.

Security officers and Collier County sheriff’s deputies stopped Rodriguez, who said his friend was going to pay for the items. Asked about his friend, Rodriguez told officers, “I ain’t telling you (expletive), figure it out yourself,” deputies reported.

Rodriguez then asked to be Baker Acted, referring to the Florida law that allows people with mental health issues to be involuntarily committed.

Reports say Rodriguez was taken to Physicians Regional Hospital before being booked into the Naples Jail Center. Rodriguez, whose address in Naples was not included in reports, faces a felony charge of grand theft.