Woman Allegedly Threatened Security Guard with Pepper Spray during TJ Maxx Robbery; Judge Calms Down, Releases Accused from Jail with No Required Bail

By Anna Olsen 

ALAMEDA, CA – The accused was released on her own recognizance Monday morning here in Alameda County Superior Court for charges involving a robbery at T.J. Maxx in which she allegedly threatened a security guard with pepper spray.

The accused faces charges of second-degree robbery, petty theft of merchandise, possession of burglar’s tools and possession of a tear gas weapon that expels a projectile.

Judge Morris Jacobson expanded on the details of the robbery, explaining that the accused allegedly stole a large volume of merchandise and threatened—with pepper spray—the security guard who attempted to stop her at the door.

When the accused was arrested, police claim she had pepper spray in her backpack.

Judge Jacobson argued “there’s a pattern and practice of violent activity in the course of what are otherwise non-violent thefts. Anybody in stores that try to interfere with her stealing (is) likely to be confronted with a violent response from her.”

Defense Attorney Erin Kathleen Herrera convinced the judge to employ less restrictive alternatives to the accused’s pretrial situation.

Judge Jacobson agreed, releasing the accused on her own recognizance with no bail required, and ordered her to attend pretrial services Tuesday to be fitted for an ankle monitor and that she return to court Wednesday morning to confirm its placement with him.

Jacobson made clear the rules of her release which prohibits her from setting foot in any T.J. Maxx store or owning any dangerous weapons that could be used offensively in public.

The accused was ordered to appear in person for her arraignment on July 25.

About The Author

Anna Olsen is a recent UC Berkeley graduate originally from Seattle, WA. She double majored in law and global studies and plans to head to law school after taking a gap year to become a juvenile defense attorney.

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