Springfield police use Facebook to find man accused of stealing liquor

9:21 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017 Crime
Norman L. Gray

A Springfield Police Division officer and employees of a local drive-through used Facebook to track down a man accused of stealing liquor from the store, according to a police report.

Norman L. Gray II, 28, of Springfield, faces one count of theft. He’s expected to appear in court at 11 a.m. today.

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Springfield Police Division Officer Roger Jenkins was sent to the Ooh Ooh Drive Thru, 1359 W. First St. about 4:30 p.m. Monday to investigate a theft from the business.

Gray ordered an alcoholic beverage, according to a police report, then told an employee he forgot his money and allegedly walked out the front door. He re-entered the store but quickly left again, police said, allegedly taking a large bottle of grape vodka without paying.

One of the employees said he recognized the suspect and showed Jenkins photos of his Facebook page. The photos showed a “distinct blue house” with a construction style matching homes on Hillcrest Avenue, the report says. The photos also showed a maroon minivan in the driveway.

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Jenkins went to area and recognized the home in the 1200 block of Beverly Avenue, which also had a maroon minivan in the driveway.

When the suspect came to the door, the officer told Gray he was under arrest for theft. Gray allegedly didn’t deny the charge but asked Jenkins how he knew about it, the report says.

“I told him that the manager knew and identified him from his Facebook page,” Jenkins says in the report.

Gray was ordered into court.

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