PORTAGE | A woman arrested at Wal-Mart on a shoplifting charge faced additional charges when jail officers found items stolen from the hospital emergency room, where she was taken to be checked out for an apparent seizure.
Amber McClelland, 33, of Lake Station, is charged with theft, possession of cocaine and possession of a controlled substance.
Portage police were called Monday afternoon to Wal-Mart, 6087 U.S. 6, for a report of two women who had failed to pay for some items.
When police arrived, they learned one woman was in the store's loss prevention office and the second woman had fled. Police said McClelland, who remained at the store, was reportedly having a seizure and was being treated by Portage Fire Department medics.
Store officials told police McClelland, who has one leg and was using one of the store's motorized carts, was seen scanning some items in the self checkout lanes, but failed to scan all of the items in their cart. Another woman with her was handing McClelland the items out of their carts.
The women were stopped by employees who suspected the theft and checked their receipts. Store employees said clothing and candles worth $43 had not been scanned with the rest of their purchase.
According to police the woman with McClelland fled.
Police said medics were called to the store when McClelland reported suffering a seizure.
Police said McClelland was taken to Porter Portage Hospital Campus where she was evaluated by a doctor, medically cleared and taken to Porter County Jail.
Police said jail officers found several medical items in a hospital bag usually provided to carry personal possessions. According to police, locking forceps, a rubber tourniquet, an IV start kit, sterile swabs and syringe of saline were found.
McClelland had told police a nurse had given her items to care for her amputated leg.
But hospital staff told police they did not give those items to her.
Police were seeking an additional felony theft charge against McClelland.
Officers later went to the home of the woman who was with McClelland and determined she did not play a role in the shoplifting and was not charged.