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Women charged with stealing nearly $100K in goods from Rockford Meijer

Staff Report

ROCKFORD — Three women have been indicted for allegedly stealing nearly $100,000 worth of merchandise from a Rockford department store, Winnebago County State’s Attorney Marilyn Hite Ross announced Thursday, Feb. 28.

Former Meijer employees, Lindsey Smallwood, 27; Helena Washington, 62; and 29-year-old Vanessa Horvath, are charged with retail theft. They each face up to seven years in prison.

Charges stem from a Feb. 1 report to the Rockford Police Department that employees were stealing from the Meijer at 2013 McFarland Road. The loss-prevention team alleged that between November 2018 and January 2019, Smallwood, Washington and Horvath worked together to take merchandise from the business without paying for it.

The stolen goods were valued at nearly $100,000, prosecutors said. Smallwood and Washington face one count of retail theft. Horvath faces one count of theft and one count of retail theft.

Theft is a Class 2 felony punishable by three to seven years in prison.  Retail theft is a Class 3 felony with a sentencing range of two to five years.

Washington and Horvath are scheduled to be arraigned at 8:30 a.m., March 7.  Smallwood is scheduled for a 1:30 p.m. arraignment the same day. Both hearings are in Courtroom D of the Winnebago County Justice Center. R.

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