Florida woman climbs into Big Lots ceiling to avoid shoplifting arrest

A Florida woman wanted for shoplifting tried to elude law enforcement by climbing along ceiling tiles inside a Big Lots department store.
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A Florida woman wanted for shoplifting tried to elude law enforcement by climbing along ceiling tiles inside a Big Lots department store.

A Florida woman wanted for shoplifting tried to elude law enforcement by climbing along ceiling tiles inside a Big Lots department store.

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Kristina Perkins, 37, went into a restroom at the store Thursday night with a shopping cart filled with $58.67 worth of merchandise, including toys, makeup and candy, WBBH reported.

A manager tried to check on her and found several trash cans positioned as a makeshift barricade at the door. The manager was able to get into the restroom and noticed some of the ceiling tiles were missing.

Charlotte County Sheriff's Office deputies arrived and found Perkins in the ceiling. But as they moved tiles to get to her, she would move to another part of the ceiling.

After a search that took several hours and included the evacuation of the store, Perkins was captured early Friday morning.

She was arrested and charged with felony criminal mischief, petty theft, possession of drug paraphernalia, resisting a merchant and resisting law enforcement without violence, investigators said.

Perkins caused about $5,000 damage to the roof, air conditioning ductwork and drywall.