Two suspects have been accused in Anoka County District Court of stealing numerous eyeglass frames worth thousands of dollars from several stores in the Twin Cities, including two in Blaine.
Hector Astudillo, 27, and Beverly Sanchez Jara, 38, addresses unknown, are both due back in court Nov. 13 on two felony charges – aiding and abetting theft over $5,000 and aiding and abetting receiving stolen property over $5,000.
They have both posted bail amounts set at their arraignment in court Oct. 9.
Blaine Police responded to a theft report Oct. 4 at the Lens Crafters store in Northtown Mall where the manager said that a Hispanic male and a pregnant Hispanic female came into the store and suspiciously looked at eyeglass frames without making an appointment, according to the complaint.
After the pair left, the manager allegedly found that about $5,000 to $10,000 worth of high-end eyeglass frames had been stolen from the two areas of the store where they were seen.
Reviewing surveillance footage, the manager allegedly observed the two placing the expensive frames in their pockets and putting cheaper frames in their place.
Police received additional reports from multiple locations in the Twin Cities, including Vision Works stores in Blaine, Roseville, Minnetonka, Crystal and St. Louis Park, of the same Hispanic male and female stealing eyeglass frames between Oct. 3 and 4 at a value exceeding $5,000, the complaint alleges.
According to the complaint, police stopped a vehicle containing two people matching the description of the suspects near Ridgedale Mall and identified them as Astudillo and Jara.
In plain view on the floor of the passenger side was a backpack that was partially open and allegedly contained numerous pairs of eyeglass frames with the price tags still attached.
Searching the vehicle and the suspects, officers allegedly located 165 pairs of stolen eyeglass frames valued at some $37,045.19.
Police reviewed video surveillance from the theft incidents and allegedly identified Astudillo and Jara as the people stealing the eyeglass frames.
Peter Bodley is at [email protected]