Cops: shoplifter claimed to be federal marshal

Russell Jones

A Grand Junction man allegedly tried to dodge shoplifting charges at a grocery store by claiming he was a federal cop on the job.

Russell W. Jones, 51, posted $1,000 bond Tuesday following his arrest a day earlier on suspicion of felony criminal impersonation and misdemeanor theft.

An arrest affidavit said a loss-prevention manager at City Market, 2770 U.S. Highway 50, called police Monday afternoon and told them he watched Jones place several unspecified items into his pants pockets and didn’t pay for them.

Jones was with the City Market worker in the store’s loss-prevention office by the time a Grand Junction Police Department officer arrived.

When confronted by the store employee, Jones emptied his pockets and eventually handed over a U.S. government identification. The employee told the police officer that Jones explained he was a U.S. marshal who was at the store that day to review security cameras “to see how they worked,” the affidavit said.

The police officer confirmed that Jones was not a marshal and has never worked for the federal agency.

Jones is expected to be formally charged next Tuesday.


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