A 33-year-old male from Miami Gardens took thousands of dollars’ worth of equipment from a Verizon store in Lakewood Ranch, according to the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.
According to the investigation conducted by the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office, Nigel Thompkins-Wilson applied for the position of store manager at the Verizon store located on the 1700 block of Lakewood Ranch Boulevard in Manatee County using a false Social Security card issued in the name of Steven Edwards and a false date of birth.
The sheriff’s office said that on his second day on the job, he stole 69 items of equipment, including different Apple Watches, iPhones, and iPads, valued at approximately $64,000.
The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office detained Thompkins-Wilson on September 10 and charged him with grand theft in the second degree and using a fake identification to obtain employment, both third-degree felonies, according to the Manatee Clerk of Court.
According to Florida law, a third-degree felony is punishable by up to five years in jail, probation, or a $5,000 fine, while a second-degree crime, such as grand larceny, has a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison or 15 years of probation and a fine of $10,000.
According to the records kept by the Manatee Clerk of Court, on February 20th, Thompkins-Wilson began working as a sales associate at a Verizon shop after having completed and filed job paperwork and attended an interview.
However, investigators claim that he provided bogus identification on his job applications, CV, and the federal government’s I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification form.
According to the sheriff’s office, Thompkins-Wilson lied to Verizon about his identity by using a phony Texas Department of Public Safety Temporary Permit and the alias “Steven Edwards” throughout the application process.
Detectives claim that on Thompkins-Wilson’s second day of training as a manager, he brought a suitcase into the business. According to the gossip mill, he let it be known to his coworkers that he was sleeping in a hotel and needed to have the bag with him at all times until he found an apartment.
Detectives believe that at the end of the night, when the other two managers who were training him had departed and Thompkins-Wilson was alone, the store’s safe was in the same room as his bag. Extra phones and accessories were supposedly stored in the safe.
After placing the goods in the suitcase, the video allegedly shows Thompkins-Wilson removing a plastic bag from the store and inserting further stolen goods inside.
The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office claims that Thompkins-Wilson then escaped via the rear exit with the loot. He ignored his phone and never came back to the shop.
The Sheriff’s Office claims they were able to provisionally authenticate Thompkins-Wilson’s identification by using the photo on the fake Texas permit. Two supervisors from Verizon who were working with him on February 21 and witnessed the theft were then given more images. Both parties were able to positively identify Thompkins-Wilson as the person who used the alias Steven Edwards at work.