Albuquerque woman accused of shoplifting to be released from jail
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — 36-year-old Monica Montoya was in court Monday, facing charges in a disastrous and deadly case of shoplifting. She was arrested Saturday at the West Side Kohl’s.
“Officers were advised by the loss prevention staff of Kohl’s that they were watching a male and female suspect inside stealing merchandise,” APD Deputy Chief Mike Smathers said.
Montoya was arrested, but her male partner, identified as Pete Martinez, fled. Police say he had a gun and he ran across the parking lot of the Barnes & Noble bookstore. Martinez ran into the nearby Coldstone Creamery and exited through the back of the business.
Moments later, an APD officer shot and killed Martinez behind a nearby medical building.
“It just reinforces the dangers Albuquerque police officers are facing as they try to impact retail theft, which we know is a real challenge here in the city,” Smathers said.
The shooting happened during APD’s Operation Sticky Fingers. Albuquerque police have been pairing up with retailers to try and catch and arrest shoplifters in the act. This time, things ended violently.
“This gentleman was in the store, stealing merchandise, armed with a weapon, and was more than willing to produce a weapon when challenged by police,” Smathers said.
Montoya is charged with shoplifting and conspiracy. With no pretrial detention motion filed, she will be released from jail.