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Cashier, 19, charged in Wal-Mart theft

– A Fort Wayne Wal-Mart employee was charged Friday with theft after he was accused of walking out of the store with all the money from that day’s sales at his register.

The investigation into 19-year-old Michael E. Ward Jr. started in late March when a manager at Wal-Mart pulled money from the checkout lanes and found Ward was not in his lane, according to a probable cause affidavit.

The manager then discovered the cash drawer in the register was empty.

In-store security footage showed Ward started work at 4 p.m. that day, and after he checked out several customers later in the evening, he turned off the checkout lane light, took all the money from the cash drawer and put it in one of two trash cans at the register, police said.

He then carried both trash cans near the time card clock, pulled the money bag from the trash can, clocked out and left the store through the front door, the report said.

Loss prevention told police there was $3,800 stolen from the drawer.

Police said they tried several times to interview Ward about the allegations, but he refused to return any phone messages.

Ward, of the 4700 block of Heatherwind Drive, was not in custody Friday evening, but a warrant was issued for his arrest.

cmeyers@jg.net

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