|Odds are good: She's on EBT/Food Stamps|
A woman who punched and pepper-sprayed employees who caught her shoplifting at the Lexington Road Piggly Wiggly last week also spat on one of the workers and claimed she had HIV.On Memorial Day 2012, this story made me smile. Freedom Failed.
She asked the arresting officer to write his report in a way that is would be “more interesting so that her arrest would make the police blotter” in the local newspaper.
Those are among details of last Wednesday’s assault included in a police report that wasn’t publicly available until Friday.
Additionally, 26-year-old Lonneshia Shafaye Appling challenged officers to charge her with as many crimes as possible because she claimed she’d get a plea bargain in which half the charges would be dropped, according to the report.
Appling is a career shoplifter, and at the time of her arrest was wanted for thefts in Athens-Clarke, Oconee and Fulton counties, police said.
She wreaked havoc inside Piggly Wiggly last week after a customer saw her hide items in a large canvas bad in her shopping cart, then pay for just one item at the checkout counter, police said.
The customer alerted an employee, who tried to stop Appling at the exit, police said.
That’s when the woman pulled out a can of pepper spray and shot a burst of the blinding mist into the employee’s face, police said.
When other employees tried to help, Appling dispersed the spray all around her then ran out a side door, according to police.
As employees closed the distance between the 340-pound woman outside, they saw her dropping cans of beer she’d hidden in her purse, police said. As they followed her, Appling punched one of the workers, then spit in his face.
She also offered the employees money if they would stop following her, according to police.
The employees still were following Appling as police arrived. The officers found that in addition to the cans of Coors Light, the woman tried to steal vegetable oil, five packs of cheese, five packs of bacon and two packs of chicken wings, police said.
Appling, of 115 Sena Drive, was charged with felony theft by shoplifting not because of the value of the items she tried to steal — $88.27 — but because she had more than three previous shoplifting convictions, police said.
At the Clarke County Jail, and as officers figured the various charges she would be booked on, Appling spoke about the plea bargain she’d get in court and mentioned she was mentally ill, a claim officers didn’t buy, according to the police report.
“She seemed to know what was going on,” Senior Police Officer Nate Franco wrote in his report.
Appling “also commented that store personnel shouldn’t chase people like that because they could get themselves hurt,” the officer wrote.
Franco knew that one charge on Appling would be aggravated assault because of the blast of pepper spray she gave to the Piggly Wiggly employee’s face.
“From personal experience, I know that pepper spray has the ability to completely incapacitate a person,” the officer wrote in his report. “Being pepper-sprayed is the most pain I have ever felt in my life, and I consider it a violent assault.”
Franco wrote that he needed to confirm Appling’s claims she had the AIDS virus because “additional charges could be added based on her having HIV and spitting on another.”
Appling has a flair for the spectacular, as evidenced by a performance she gave when arrested in January for shoplifting at an Ingles in Madison County.
The Madison County Journal reported that when the officer tried to take Appling into custody, she began taking her clothes off and told the officer to lick her because she had AIDS.
As the officer struggled to cuff the large woman, the Journal reported, Appling continued to strip until she was completely naked. She broke free from the officer, who subdued her with a Taser.
For the Piggly Wiggly incident, in addition to felony shoplifting and aggravated assault, Appling was charged with simple battery, disorderly conduct and obstruction of a law enforcement officer.
She was still held without bail as of Monday evening.