A Greenwood man has been accused of stealing $21,000 worth of phones plus cash from a Verizon Wireless store.

The Police Department charged Richard Lee Austin, 26, 418 W. Harding Ave., with commercial burglary Thursday.

He was released on $6,200 bond Friday, Chief Ray Moore said.

The police received a call from employees of Verizon Wireless on U.S. 82 at about 8:45 a.m. Monday after they discovered that the front window of the building had been broken and the store’s safe had been burglarized, Moore said.  

In addition to the phones, two safe deposit boxes were missing.

On Tuesday, Austin’s vehicle was pulled over during a traffic stop on Cotton Street, the chief said. He initially was charged with several misdemeanors: failure to stop a motor vehicle when an officer signaled, driving with a suspended license and no tag.

Austin already was a person of interest behind the burglary at Verizon Wireless, Moore said.

After obtaining a search warrant for the vehicle, officers found all but two of the stolen phones and recovered some cash.

Verizon reported that 27 phones, collectively worth $21,000, were taken, Moore said.

The chief declined to say how much cash was missing, how much was recovered or what type of phones were stolen.

Contact Gerard Edic at 581-7239 or gedic@gwcommonwealth.com.

(1) comment


He got to be the dumbest man walking I just can’t believe he still had all the merchandise in his possession he was better off not doing the crime because clearly this man just wanted to add charges to his criminal background 😂😂😂🤦🏽‍♀️🤦🏽‍♀️🤦🏽‍♀️🤦🏽‍♀️

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