FORSYTH — A suspected shoplifter was arrested nine months after the reported crime when he was identified using facial recognition software, the Macon County Sheriff's Office said.

A sworn affidavit by detective Cody Woods said the 57-year-old man was arrested Nov. 9. He was originally detained March 3, having left the Kohl’s store in Hickory Point Mall with five shirts worth $144 he hadn’t paid for, the affidavit said. When the store’s loss prevention officer tried to stop him, the affidavit said the man shoved a cart containing the shirts at the officer and said “get a warrant.”

Woods said surveillance footage was given to the sheriff's office forensics expert, Ed German.

“German ran still photographs through the department’s facial recognition software, which determined a strong resemblance to (the suspect),” Woods said in the affidavit. The detective said he then called up the suspect’s picture in a police database and was able to make a positive identification.

The man was arrested on a preliminary charge of committing retail theft while having a prior theft conviction. Preliminary charges are subject to review by the state’s attorney’s office.

He remained in the Macon County Jail Monday in lieu of posting $20,000 bond. If he makes bail, he has been ordered to stay away from all Kohl’s stores.


Staff Writer

Courts and public safety reporter for the Herald & Review.

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