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Posted: October 23, 2012 8:06 p.m.

Home Depot worker helps friends steal

A Home Depot employee faces charges of theft by deception after she reportedly admitted to letting customers leave the store without paying for all of their merchandise.

A Covington police officer responded to the Home Depot located on Industrial Park Boulevard in reference to a theft on Saturday. An asset protection manager told the officer that Stephanie Paden admitted to stealing from the store for more than four to five months.

In a written statement, Paden said she would let friends come through her line, void out the transaction on items, ring up one item and then she would let her friends leave the store with a buggy full of items. On other occasions, Paden said she would allow her friends to come through her line and she would correct some of the items on a receipt and they would leave only paying for a couple of items.

The employee's friends would pay her a percentage of the items they did not pay for. The estimated cost of items that were stolen was $3,600. The asset protection manager told the officer that he had a video tape of the transactions and he would attempt to get the register receipts of the voided transactions and other transactions the employee falsified. The employee was arrested and taken to the Newton County Jail.

Shelter disturbances
A woman was arrested for criminal trespassing after she refused to leave a shelter.

Covington police officers responded to the Rainbow Shelter located on Turner Lake Circle on Friday around 9: 30 p.m. in reference to an argument and a woman refusing to leave. When police arrived, a woman with blue marker on her face came toward officers yelling that she just wanted a place to stay. One of the police officers spoke with a Rainbow Shelter employee who said on Oct. 9, the woman was arrested for harassing the tenants and she was told that she would not be allowed back on the premises.

The employee said the woman came back to the shelter and was getting into other tenants' faces yelling and screaming and at one point, reportedly said she would "eat the intestines" of some of the tenants at the shelter. Police charged the woman with disorderly conduct and criminal trespassing. She was taken to the Newton County Jail.

Car repair purchase
A woman said an automotive employee used her debit card to make purchases when she took her vehicle to get repaired. A deputy with the Newton County Sheriff's Office spoke to a woman at the sheriff's office on Thursday.

She told the deputy that she dropped off her vehicle at Golden Rule Automotive located at Access Road for repairs on Oct. 15. She said while she waited for her vehicle, an employee who worked there used her debit card which she left in the vehicle to purchase $180 worth of merchandise using his cell phone.

The woman found out about the transaction the next day when she checked her bank account. She contacted the manager at Golden Rule Automotive and told him about the incident and provided him with the cell phone number to the phone that was used to make the purchased. The manager contacted her back and said the employee who was responsible was fired. Her money was refunded by the bank.

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