Police: Walmart pharmacy technician stole 518 pills

Suspect told police she took pills for terminally ill mother

Published On: Sep 19 2012 04:27:18 PM EDT   Updated On: Sep 19 2012 04:28:53 PM EDT

A Walmart pharmacy technician was arrested Monday after police said she stole more than 500 prescription pain pills valued at more than $2,000.

Rebecca Thomas, 40, told police she stole the pills from the store at 134090 Beach Boulevard and gave them to her mother, who is terminally ill.

The asset protection manager at Walmart called police and told them Thomas had been stealing from the pharmacy she was working in, according to a police report. He said he watched surveillance video that showed Thomas put about 17 pills in her pocket, then showed her walk into a restroom, according to the report.

The manager said once he saw Thomas stealing hydrocodone and acetaminophen pills, he investigated further by having the pharmacy doctor check inventory on the pills, according to the report. Police said Thomas stole 518 pills over time.

The manager said the pharmacy's inventory was rarely short, and he believed Thomas was taking a handful of pills each time she worked, according to the report.

Police said Thomas admitted to stealing the pills over several weeks because her mother was terminally ill and needed pain pills to suprress her pain. Thomas told police she didn't abuse the pills or sell them, the report says.

She told police she's been a pharmacy technician since 1986 and had never stolen pills before, according to the report.

Thomas said the pill she stole Monday she flushed down the toilet because she was scared of being caught, according to the police report.