HANCOCK COUNTY — An Indiana State Police trooper stopped an eastbound vehicle for speeding along I-70 and discovered over $26,500 in stolen electronics from another state inside the car.
Four Ohio residents are now facing theft and other charges. The four were arrested and charged late last week and made their court appearances this week in Hancock County Superior Court 2, Jan 10.
Alyssia C. Albert, 27, Columbus, Ohio, is charged with a Level 6 felony count of theft and a Class A misdemeanor charge of false identity statement. Sadrina E. Lowry, 23, Columbus, Ohio, is charged with a Level 6 felony count of theft, a Class A misdemeanor charge of false identity and a Class B misdemeanor charge of possession of marijuana. Kionte Keyshawn Whatley, 22, Columbus, Ohio, is charged with a Level 6 felony count of theft, and Ronitra L. Whatley, 25, Columbus, Ohio, is facing a Level 6 felony count of theft.
According to a probable cause affidavit, the trooper noted the speeding vehicle around 4 p.m. Jan. 4 near mile-marker 95 on I-70 and pulled the car over. The trooper noted the strong smell of marijuana coming from inside. The driver, eventually identified as Albert, initially gave officials a fake name. She also told officials the car she was driving belonged to family when in fact it was a rental.
Police searched the vehicle and found several Apple IPads, air pods, watches, Samsung cell phones and tablets as well as bolt cutters, magnetic anti-theft tag removers. Keys that are commonly used in retail security cases were also located. The front license plate of the vehicle had also been removed and placed in the rear cargo area, the report stated.
Officials also noted in the report that, after speaking with a Walmart loss prevention manager, it was determined that the items were stolen the previous day from an Ames, Iowa Walmart. The Walmart officials were able to send police photos of the suspects taken from the Walmart in Iowa, and it appeared to be the same subjects the trooper had detained.
The report also stated a check through records indicated Kionte Keyshawn Whatley was wanted on warrants out of Florida and Georgia for theft-related cases.
According to court records, the four had their initial appearances Jan. 10 via video court where Judge Dan Marshall entered not guilty pleas on behalf of the defendants and set surety bonds in the amount of $10,000. Pretrial conferences are set for Friday, March 10.
Lowry was no longer listed as an inmate as of press time, but the other three were still inmates in the county jail when this report was filed.