BROOKSVILLE — A Brooksville octogenarian is facing several charges after authorities say he was caught shoplifting at the Walmart store at 7305 Broad St., then led employees to believe he had a gun.
According to a Brooksville Police report, Walmart employees attempted to stop Stephen Rechis, 85, after seeing him open a package and put items in his pockets. The employees told authorities that Rechis threatened them and claimed he had a .45-caliber handgun in his pants pocket.
Officers responding to the call said that when Rechis reached into his pocket, he was taken to the ground and handcuffed. The report said that Rechis did not have a gun, but told officers that he wanted the Walmart employees to think he did to scare them.
Rechis was arrested on charges of retail theft, resisting a merchant and resisting arrest. He was taken to the Hernando County Detention Center, where he posted $750 bail and was released.
Authorities said Rechis previously had been arrested on retail theft charges at Walmart and had been told not to trespass on the property.