HANOVER COUNTY, Va. (WRIC)– A Mechanicsville small business is searching for the person who was caught shoplifting on surveillance video last week.
The theft happened just two days before Thanksgiving. On Nov. 23, employees at For Posh Sake, a clothing store and gift shop on Chamberlayne Road, noticed a woman they’d never seen dressed in all black carrying a large bag.
The owner of the store, Brooke Fulwilder, said she was helping another customer when the woman approached her carrying clothes in her hand and asked to use a dressing room.
“She kept hitting things and knocking them down throughout the store, and then bumping into people as well. It definitely caused a bit of a stir,” Fulwilder said.
The store owner said the woman left the dressing room, ran past her and out the door smiling. Surveillance video shows the woman leaving the store around 1:40 p.m.
Below are photos of the woman caught on camera:
Mikaelyn Whittaker and Kate Benicase work at the store and said they were shocked and felt taken advantage of.
“My jaw dropped. I was like, ‘Why would someone come into a place like this?'” Whittaker said. “We’re all so close together. It’s just really heartbreaking.”
Fulwilder said the woman stole a green sweater, a men’s t-shirt and several face masks.
“For someone just to grab that and run out of the door, it definitely did not sit well with me or the employees,” Fulwilder said. “We’re very giving. We did give to charities throughout the year too, and if it was someone that was in need, I would have gladly actually given it to them.”
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, vendors are short-staffed and shipment prices are increasing. Fulwilder typically orders everything for the Christmas season at the start of the year in January but said vendors are having trouble unloading the shipments due to a low number of employees.
For Posh Sake also has to pay more for shipping in addition to surcharges of 8 to 15 percent per shipment.
“It has definitely cut into profit margins for small businesses. I know I’m not alone,” Fulwilder said.
The incident was posted on the store’s Facebook page, which now has been shared nearly 400 times.
Brianna Maher, a customer who witnessed the incident, called it “upsetting.”
According to Fulwilder, the store had a record Black Friday and Small Business Saturday, even after the unfortunate incident.
“It’s reassuring that the community is still supportive of their small businesses,” Fulwilder said. “I really do hope that it keeps this from happening with this same person elsewhere in our community.”
The Hanover Sheriff’s Office is investigating this incident and asks anyone with information about it to contact Hanover County Crime Stoppers at 804-780-1000.