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Police: Wash. man linked to a dozen Boise-area store thefts

Police say they tracked the culprit down through his eBay account, which he was using to sell the stolen goods.
Credit: Boise Police

BOISE -- Boise Police say a man responsible for a string of thefts in Boise and around the region has been caught.

Kyle Williamson-Smith, 30, of East Wenatchee, Washington is accused of shoplifting dozen retail burglaries around the Boise area, stealing tens of thousands of dollars worth of goods. Williamson-Smith also stole merchandise at stores in Northern Idaho, Oregon, and Washington.

Officers began investigating the case in November after learning that someone was stealing large amounts of health and beauty products from grocery stores and other shops around Boise. The Organized Retail Crime Association of Idaho was able to link the unknown man to shoplifting cases as far back in June.

Williamson-Smith struck local stores again in December and January, but police were unable to find out his identity. Ultimately, however, investigators were able to identify Williamson-Smith through his eBay account, where he was selling many of the stolen items, police say. 

Credit: Boise Police
Kyle Williamson-Smith

Boise Police worked together with law enforcement in East Wenatchee to serve a search warrant at the suspect's home in Washington this week. A search of the house turned up $14,000 worth of stolen products including razors, fishing line, diet pills, allergy medicine and more.

"Retail crime has a real impact on a community in the form of increased prices due to theft. The work of the Boise Police Department Organized Retail Crime Unit adds an immeasurable value to the community by watching out for local businesses and putting a strong emphasis on stopping organized retail crime," Boise Police Captain Paul Burch said.  "In this case we were able to stop a suspect victimizing communities across the northwest." 

Williamson-Smith was arrested Sunday and booked into the Chelan County Jail. 

Authorities say that hundreds of thousands of stolen items had been sold using the eBay account Williamson-Smith was using. So far, he has been linked to more than 30 shoplifting cases total, and is facing 20 felonies. 

Williamson-Smith will be extradited back to Ada County to face charges.

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