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Wal-Mart Shoplifter Takes Officer's Pepper Spray, Tries to Spray Officer

Worcester, MA (November 6, 2017) - On 11/6/17 a Worcester Police Officer was working a paid detail at Wal-Mart in 25 Tobias Boland Way. At about 10 AM, the officer observed a male, later identified as Wilfredo Crespo Morales, conceal several electronic items as he walked out of the store. The officer confronted Mr. Morales at the door, and said that he needed to come into the Wal-Mart loss prevention office. At this point, Mr. Morales refused and tried to flee. The officer grabbed Mr. Morales by the arm, and Mr. Morales began struggling and trying to pull away.

As the officer grappled with Mr. Morales, he broadcast over the radio that he needed assistance at Wal-Mart. Mr. Morales was now aggressively trying to throw the officer on the ground and shove him away. The officer took out his department-issued OC spray and tried to deliver a one second burst of spray to Mr. Morales.

Mr. Morales knocked the officer off-balance and took away his OC spray. At this point, Mr. Morales tried to spray the officer in the eyes, and instead struck him on top of his head. The officer was able to knock the spray to the ground and they continued to struggle. A bystander took the spray from the floor and kept it away from Mr. Morales for the duration of the conflict.

At this point, the officer was asking Wal-Mart staff and bystanders for help. A Wal-Mart staff member helped the officer control Mr. Morales, who fell into an exit door, which was knocked off the hinges. At this point, other officers arrived and Mr. Morales was placed in handcuffs. He is charged with Shoplifting over $100.00, Attempting to Disarm a Police Officer, Assault and Battery on a Police Officer, Assault and Battery Dangerous Weapon (to wit door) , Assault and Battery , Resisting Arrest , Disorderly Conduct , Disturbing the Peace, and Defacement of Property. He will be arraigned in Worcester District Court.

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