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COLUMBUS – A couple of Columbus men had plenty of toys to play with when they arrived at their midtown home and found a city police officer on their trail after a shopping run to a local discount store.

Suspects Hunter Thompson, 23, and Tayler Randall, 26, are each accused of multiple offenses in Platte County Court after making the trip to Wal-Mart Supercenter, 818 E. 23rd St., on Tuesday evening that was quickly followed by a shoplifting report at the store.

Judge Frank Skorupa set bond for Randall at $10,000, 10 percent allowed for release, and $10,000, personal recognizance, for Thompson.

The judge scheduled the suspects for first appearance hearings March 7.

Columbus Police dispatch radioed Officer Jeff Anderson that a suspect had gotten into a white 2009 Chevrolet Malibu and driven westbound on 23rd Street. Dispatch also provided the officer with identifying marks on the vehicle and an address for the owner.

The men weren’t at home when Anderson arrived, but were observed returning at the corner of 14th Street and 33rd Avenue. Within blocks, the officers initiated a traffic stop.

Anderson said the men admitted having been at the store, but denied they had stolen a drone-type remote-controller that was found in the suspect’s car, along with a GoPro and a box for a remote control car.

Police said the store’s video surveillance “clearly” showed one of the suspect’s removing a controller from a box and placing it inside his coat.

Anderson reported that Thompson and Randall both went to the store, but Randall stayed in the vehicle because he is banned from going on the property.

Officers also seized methamphetamine following a search of the suspects’ vehicle.

Randall is accused of being in possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and second-degree trespassing. Thompson is accused of being in possession of a controlled substance and shoplifting.



Jim Osborn is a news reporter at The Columbus Telegram.

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