Shoplifter sentenced, fined for extradition |

Shoplifter sentenced, fined for extradition

It was one big barbecue – or was it? Who knew charcoal could be so expensive?

For Mark Craig four bags of purloined Kingsford Match Light charcoal ended up costing him $1,445. Of course, Craig’s attempt to flee the country added to the bill.

On March 3, the day that Craig, 23, of Zephyr Cove was scheduled to appear in the Tahoe Township Justice Court on the charge that he walked into the Round Hill Safeway store and made off with the charcoal, he was actually trying to enter Canada.

Craig was stopped in Vancouver, British Columbia and questioned by Canadian customs’ authorities. During the interview they learned Craig was suppose to appear that day on a felony burglary charge. Douglas County investigators said Craig was turned over to U.S. Customs, who placed him on a plane to Seattle and then contacted Douglas County.

Craig was extradited from Washington and entered a guilty plea to petty larceny last week. He was sentenced to 30 days in the county jail and ordered to pay restitution – $42.45 for the charcoal, $175 for an outstanding ticket, and $1,227.65 for the cost of two deputies to bring him back from Washington.

Investigators said they are not sure of Craig’s motive for trying to leave the county. Sgt. Detective Tim Minister said that when Craig’s father was asked why his son would attempt such desperate measures, he said his son was different and he believed he was suffering from mental problems.

“Mr. Craig stated his son does not touch drugs and could not explain his behavior except to say that he was not logical,” Minister reported to the court.

According to interviews with Craig’s roommates, investigators said it seemed that Craig might have needed a lot of charcoal. Minister said that Craig’s roommate claimed that Craig would never cook a meal inside on the stove.

“He said that Craig always cooked outside on the grill, no matter how cold it was,” Minister said.

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