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5 arrested after Wednesday night retail theft and police chase on I-83

Officials say police units gave chase after the car, following it into Cumberland County and the area of New Cumberland before the vehicle crashed.
Credit: Lower Paxton Township Police Department

CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Pa. — Five Maryland residents are in police custody after a retail theft and police case in Dauphin and Cumberland Counties that occurred on Sept. 7.

Lower Paxton Township Police responded to reports of a retail theft at an Ulta Beauty Store on Jonestown Road in Lower Paxton Township just after 7 p.m.

Ulta employees reported that two females had just stolen a large number of fragrances and other merchandise from the store. They had fled from the store in a black sedan with out-of-state registration plates. 

Police say the store has previously been the target of multiple out-of-state organized retail theft rings over the last two years.

While responding to the dispatch, officials say patrol units found the sedan in the area of Jonestown Road and tried to pull over the car.

Instead of pulling over, police say the car drove off west on Jonestown Road before turning onto Interstate 83 southbound lanes.

Officials say police units gave chase after the car, following it into Cumberland County and the area of New Cumberland. 

The black sedan tried to pass a tractor tailor by driving past it on the shoulder of the road. However, during the maneuver, the driver of the car lost control and struck the guard rail. The car reportedly bounced off and collided with the truck before crashing back into the guard rail a final time and coming to a rest on the shoulder of the road.

Police say two female passengers tried to flee the area on foot but were quickly apprehended. Three additional suspects were taken into custody without incident.

Police say merchandise from the Ulta Store, as well as the Under Armour Outlet in Derry Township, was observed in plain view in the backseat as well.

Officials have charged Teona James (25); Tymera James (20); Destiny Thomas (22); Joseph Wright (31); and a 16-year-old teenage girl with felony retail theft and drug possession. Wright will face additional traffic charges as he was allegedly the driver of the black sedan.

The four adult suspects were placed in Dauphin County Prison in lieu of bail. The juvenile female was released to the custody of a relative.

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