Monday, September 20, 2021
Sept. 20, 2021

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Man faces a possible felony charge in a $6 theft

He allegedly took cash from produce vendor's apron

By , Columbian Editor

A man accused of stealing $6 from a produce-seller’s apron pocket earned a trip to jail Sunday night, and a possible felony charge today.

Anthony Smalls, 34, was arrested shortly after 8 p.m. on suspicion of first-degree theft, said Officer Ilia Botvinnik of the Vancouver Police Department.

Shortly before 8 p.m., a witness called police to say he saw a man accost a produce vendor in the parking lot of Becerra’s Place, a strip mall at 3503 E. Fourth Plain Blvd., then run west and into a field.

Thanks to the witness’s prompt call and detailed description, nearby officers were able to arrest Smalls moments later behind the Minit Mart at 20th and Merton streets, located southwest across a playfield from Becerra’s Place.

Botvinnik said the produce vendor later told police she was selling fruit and vegetables in the parking lot when a man approached her and demanded money.

When she refused him, he reached into her apron pocket, grabbed $6 and ran.

She was uninjured. But because the woman was wearing the apron at the time the money was taken, that constitutes first-degree theft under state law, Botvinnik said. That charge is usually levied only when large amounts of money are stolen.

Prosecutors will decide on the actual charge, if any, after receiving police reports.

Smalls should make a first court appearance today.