Four people accused of going on a shoplifting spree were charged with theft and conspiracy after one left behind a jacket with an identification card at the Wal-Mart in Mount Airy, authorities said.
"It makes it easier for us," Lt. Terry L. Katz, commander of the Maryland State Police at the Westminster barracks, said of the identificationcard.
Store employees told police that a man and three women left the store Sunday afternoon with $762 in merchandise, and a second shopping cart with items purchased with a store credit - from a returned blanket that employees suspected had been stolen previously.
After the four left the store with the two carts, an employee asked for and looked at a receipt. The group then threw the merchandise from one cart into the back of a Dodge pickup truck and sped off, leaving the items in the second cart behind.
"Good employees got good information, and that gave us more to investigate. They didn't put themselves in danger," Katz said, noting that theft charges can apply as soon as merchandise that hasn't been paid for leaves a store.
After finding the jacket with a Maryland identification card in the pocket, police broadcast an alert for the suspects and a pickup truck with Tennessee plates about 3 p.m.
About 4:45 p.m., troopers serving an Anne Arundel County warrant - on charges of theft and harassment - saw the truck at an address in the 1400 block of Fannie Dorsey Road in Sykesville.
Mark Allen Ahrenberg Jr., 22, was arrested on the Anne Arundel County warrant. He and his wife, Sandra Lynne Ahrenberg, 21, were charged in the Carroll County case with theft of more than $500 and conspiracy.
Shortly after midnight yesterday, troopers obtained a search warrant for a home in the 800 block of Rambo Court in Lansdowne and recovered stolen merchandise and syringes containing heroin, police said.
Angela Lee McGee, 28, and Kristen Lee Karopchinsky, 24, were charged with theft of more than $500, conspiracy and possession of heroin. A Carroll District Court commissioner set bail for McGee and Karopchinsky at $5,000 each.