Rogaine thieves hit with stay-at-home violation in Westlake, police say

First time Westlake Police have charged someone with violating state order
Updated: Apr. 23, 2020 at 10:48 PM EDT
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WESTLAKE, Ohio (WOIO) - Two repeat offenders are charged with violating Ohio’s stay-at-home order.

It comes in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, as the theft suspects were allegedly caught stealing hundreds of dollars in merchandise.

James Mathieson and Janine Bremen, both 35, each face a theft charge, after allegedly stealing high price merchandise from a drug store, so that they could return the items for cash.

They’re also charged with violating Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s stay-at-home order designed to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

It’s the first time Westlake Police charged someone with the misdemeanor crime, but Capt. Jerry Vogel says police departments like Avon have already done it.

“They’re repeat offenders who didn’t learn from the first time, just charged with theft the first time. Just keep coming back and committing crimes. So they’re going to get charged to the fullest extent of the law, which is a violation of the stay-at-home order which is very specific about going out for essential purposes only,” Capt. Vogel said.

Mathieson and Bremen are suspected of shoplifting hundreds of dollars of merchandise from the Rite Aid drug store at Dover Center and Center Ridge roads on April 22.

Police found them hiding behind a dumpster at the Speedway Gas Station, allegedly with stolen boxes of Rogaine scattered all over the ground.

Authorities suspect the duo was trying to support their drug habit, and he hopes they’ll learn something from this arrest.