A Kansas City man has been sentenced to seven years in prison after being found guilty of shoplifting merchandise worth less than $400 from four stores in Zona Rosa.
Platte County Prosecutor explained that while the punishment may appear severe at first glance, it is important to consider the man’s history in order to understand the reasoning behind the sentence.
According to court records, William M. Betts has accumulated over 50 convictions since 1991, with more than two dozen of them related to theft.
Mookie Betts was arrested most recently on January 19, 2023.
According to court documents, Betts was detained by a security guard at Zona Rosa for trespassing, as he had been banned from several stores in the area.
During the search, authorities discovered a backpack belonging to Betts containing various items from popular retailers, including Victoria’s Secret, Victoria’s Secret PINK, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and Forever 21. Notably, all of these items still had their price tags attached, leading the police to suspect that they were stolen.
According to court documents, officers examined surveillance footage from Victoria’s Secret, which clearly captured Betts engaging in shoplifting by concealing the stolen items in his bag.
Platte County Prosecutor, Eric Zahnd, emphasized that although the stolen goods were of a misdemeanor amount, it is crucial to acknowledge that the perpetrator is a repeat shoplifter with a penchant for theft. Zahnd firmly believes that the only effective way to curb his criminal behavior is by ensuring that he is incarcerated.
Betts, having a criminal record, was charged with a felony under a special provision of Missouri law. Additionally, prosecutors labeled him as a persistent felony offender, which raised the maximum potential sentence from four to seven years in prison.