Two men pleaded guilty in a retail theft ring that resulted in about $1 million in losses across seven counties, including Contra Costa County, according to an announcement Friday from California Attorney General Rob Bonta.
Anton Salaam and Marion Paul Tilley pled guilty to organized retail theft and were sentenced to 16 months in prison.
A news release from Bonta's office said the two men who pled guilty were part of an organized group that committed thefts between September 2020 and February 2021 at multiple JCPenney and Sams' Club stores in seven counties, including in Contra Costa, Fresno, Kern, Kings, Placer, Sacramento, San Bernardino, Santa Clarita and Tulare counties.
The suspects in this case entered stores by breaking and entering though exterior doors and stealing high-end jewelry, prosecutors said.
The investigation was led by a task force organized by the California Highway Patrol and the Department of Justice. Local agencies in were also involved on the task force, including the Contra Costa County Sheriff's Office.
Prosecutors said a third suspect has been charged with organized retail theft and child endangerment, as an illegal assault weapon was allegedly found in the presence of the suspect's nine-year-old child. A fourth suspect was also charged with organized retail theft.