Laundry Detergent Thieves Apprehended

Ventura County Sheriff Department – Incident Press Release

Two suspects were arrested for robbery and shoplifting charges after stealing laundry detergent and other items from a local merchant. The two suspects were also found to be suspects in similar cases in Fillmore and in Santa Barbara County throughout the week.

On May 23rd, 2019, deputies responded to a robbery in progress at the Dollar General store located at 1154 W. Ventura Street in Fillmore. Deputies learned two females entered the store and selected multiple laundry detergent containers and exited the store without paying. An alert store employee observed the crime and confronted the two, identified as Kayla Gularte and Kathryn Weaver, in the parking lot. When contacted, Gularte sprayed the employee in the face with pepper spray and assaulted him in order to escape. Gularte ran to the parking lot where Weaver was waiting in a getaway car. The subjects fled the area westbound on the 126 Highway.

Sheriff Dispatchers were able to obtain precise information from the reporting party and relay the suspect description to patrol deputies. A Sheriff’s sergeant observed the vehicle travelling on the highway towards the city of Santa Paula. The sergeant and other deputies conducted a high risk stop on the suspect vehicle and the females were taken into custody. A search of the car  revealed nearly 100 items that appeared to be stolen. Deputies recovered the stolen goods from Dollar General, along with additional laundry soap, women’s undergarments, razors, and fragrances.

Detectives learned Gularte and Weaver are suspects in a theft that occurred in Fillmore earlier in the week and one that occurred in Santa Barbara county earlier in the day. The investigation is ongoing.

Gularte was arrested and booked for the following charges; 211PC- Robbery, 182 (a)(1) PC- Conspiracy, 273 a(a) Child Endangerment, and 22810 (g)(1) PC- Use of Tear Gas.

Weaver was arrested and booked for 459.5 (a) PC- Shoplifting and 182 (a)(1) PC- Conspiracy. There is a current trend of thieves stealing laundry detergent from stores across the region.

Investigators discovered that the popular and recognizable laundry detergents are being stolen and traded on the street for cash and/or drugs.

Ventura County Crime Stoppers will pay up to $1,000 reward for information, which leads to the arrest  and criminal complaint against the person(s)  responsible for this crime.   The caller may remain anonymous. The call is not recorded. Call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477).

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