A man and a woman were questioned by the La Verne Police Department Tuesday in connection with the theft of more than $5,000 worth of textbooks taken from the University Bookstore on Monday and Tuesday.
Danielle Gornik and Erich Soiles, both 21 and Claremont residents, were arrested at around 5 p.m. in front of the store.
The suspects first visited the bookstore on Monday, where they were able to steal more than $2,100 worth of books.
“They went over to Claremont, sold the books and they got U.S. currency for them,” said La Verne Police Det. Michael Martinez.
“(Tuesday) they came back to ULV to do the same thing. Property was found in the male’s backpack.”
Even though the bookstore implemented a mandatory bag check system this year, Bookstore Manager Jeff Myers said that purse check-ins are optional.
Gornik was able to get past the check-in with her purse, and Soiles hid his backpack under his t-shirt.
“We will not force you to check (your bag) in if you don’t want to,” Myers said. “We probably will now.”
Myers called Campus Security, who then told him to file a report with the LVPD.
Both the Bookstore and The Huntley Bookstore of the Claremont Colleges had video footage of the suspects.
Myers was certain of Soiles’ identification and immediately called the LVPD when the suspects returned on Tuesday.
“To be fair, on the second day, we kind of let him do it,” Myers said. “We observed everything.”
LVPD arrived on the scene and waited outside of the bookstore. The suspects did not resist arrest.
Although the books have sensors, the main sources of security are the cameras.
“The sensors are hit or miss. So more than anything, it’s the camera system we have here and Campus Safety’s been very good with helping us with all of that,” Myers said. “They helped kind of alleviate everything. Customer service is the big thing we try to emphasize. It was pretty shocking that they took that much in a short amount of time.”
The Bookstore will be posting signs warning shoppers that they are under video surveillance and Campus Security wants to install a monitor, Myers said.
Martinez said that campuses will have more wired security in case it happens again.
With the report filed, suspects were charged for burglary and possession of stolen items, Martinez said.
It is too early to determine if there will be a trial.
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