Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Lowe's employees charged with theft from Brooksville store

BROOKSVILLE — Three Lowe's employees, two of whom were managers, have been arrested and charged with stealing $70,000 worth of merchandise over a two-year period from the Brooksville store.

Zone manager James Goldberg, 43, and store employee Barry Fehling, 64, admitted to stealing power tools, lawn mowers, wood and other merchandise, according to a Hernando County Sheriff's Office report.

Lumber department manager Robert Celli, 45, is believed to be an accomplice, according to the sheriff's report.

An investigation was launched June 25 by loss prevention manager Giovanni Ferrano and senior loss prevention investigator Randy Delaney at the Lowe's store at 7117 Broad St. in Brooksville after a nonrelated retail theft revealed a significant amount of missing store merchandise.

During the inquiry, it became apparent to the loss prevention officers that Goldberg, with the help of Fehling, had removed $70,000 worth of merchandise from the store.

After Goldberg admitted to the theft, Lowe's staffers and deputies found approximately $40,000 worth of merchandise at Goldberg's and Fehling's homes and recovered it.

Statements by Goldberg and Fehling led investigators to Celli's home at 8371 Diver Lane in Spring Hill, where police found $6,300 worth of merchandise.

Celli denied any wrongdoing and told authorities that all of the materials had been given to him by Goldberg as compensation for work he had done, according to the report.

The whereabouts of the remaining merchandise is unknown, but deputies are attempting to track it down, according to Sgt. Donna Black, public information officer for the Hernando Sheriff's Office.

Representatives of Lowe's did not return a message seeking comment Wednesday.

Goldberg, of 16807 Diplomat Street in Ridge Manor, and Fehling, of 33 Milbark Drive in Homosassa, were arrested and charged with one count of dealing in stolen property and one count of grand theft of $20,000 or more, but less than $100,000.

Both were taken to the Hernando County Jail and released Sunday on $15,000 bail.

Celli was charged with one count of grand theft and was released from jail Tuesday on $3,000 bail.

Ryan Strong can be reached at or (352) 848-1432.

Lowe's employees charged with theft from Brooksville store 07/01/09 [Last modified: Thursday, July 2, 2009 9:52am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Pasco County Fire Rescue fighting a two-alarm fire started by an explosion


    Two houses are on fire and one victim has been critically burned and taken to a trauma center following an explosion at a home at 8652 Velvet Dr, in Port Richey.

  2. Rays see the Blake Snell they've been waiting for in win over Mariners

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It was a one-run game Sunday when the Mariners' Robinson Cano singled with one out in the seventh inning, bringing the dangerous Nelson Cruz to the plate.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Blake Snell (4) throwing in the third inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017.
  3. Bucs counting on better health creating better pass rush


    TAMPA — Ask Bucs coaches about the improved depth and health of their defensive line, and they'll look around for a piece of wood to knock on.

    Retired All-Pro defensive end  Simeon Rice, right, the last Buc to have double-digit sacks in a season,  works with defensive end Ryan Russell, who last season was promoted from the practice squad for the second half of the year as injuries piled up. He is competing for a backup job this year.
  4. Tampa man turns himself in for Sunday hit and run fatality

    Public Safety

    A Tampa man was arrested early Sunday after he struck and killed a pedestrian, left the scene, and then called 911 to turn himself in.

  5. Tom Jones' Two Cents: Bucs, Jaguars both get blame for terrible preseason ratings

    TV and Radio

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst of a weekend in televised sports.

    Worst matchup

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans (13) tries to get past Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Brian Dixon (41) and safety Barry Church (42) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game, Thursday, Aug. 17, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack) JVS119