BALTIMORE — Two people, including a retired Navy service member, have pleaded guilty to stealing more than $60,000 worth of electronics from a Navy Exchange Store in Annapolis, Maryland.
The Capital reports 52-year-old Gregory Dwayne Custer pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to theft of government property and aiding and abetting the theft of government property.
Recent court records show 37-year-old Donna Marie Sieglein also pleaded guilty to one count of theft of government property.
Only active or retired Navy members and immediate family are allowed the use the exchange.
Sieglein and Custer are scheduled for sentencing in August.
Each faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Navy Times editor’s note: According to a search warrant affidavit filed by Naval Criminal Investigative Service agents, Gregory Dwayne Custer is a retired chief petty officer.
The case began on Halloween when the NEX reported $20,000 worth of stolen Apple products. Suspicion fell on a white couple seen whispering to each other in the electronics department who departed before loss prevention specialists could find them.
Video surveillance, however, showed that they visited the NEX 13 times beginning on Sept. 12, 2018 and a shot of a license plate traced the vehicle back to Custer’s residence in the Brooklyn section of Baltimore.
According to Custer’s March 21 plea agreement, they would attempt to cover up their shoplifting sprees by purchasing token items such as cat food.
On Nov. 1, Navy Police arrested both of them after they left the NEX and recovered two Apple laptops and a log of summer sausage from Sieglein’s bag. She allegedly confessed to shoplifting the items for sale on the street but Custer denied knowing anything about the thefts, according to the affidavit.
The NCIS agents, however, determined that Custer had a criminal history of theft and fraud and was on probation for misuse of funds when the NEX shoplifting occurred.
In his March 21 please agreement, he admitted to at least 24 visits to the NEX before his arrest, sometimes acting as a lookout, sometimes handing his accomplice electronics to sneak out of the store.
Although the story above says that Custer faces up to 10 years in prison, the prosecution is expected to recommend no more than eight months of confinement, according to his plea agreement.