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Vodka theft leads to foot chase, swim in river

June 23, 2009

A swim across the Menomonee River apparently was part of a 37-year-old Milwaukee man's strategy for evading arrest after he allegedly tried to steal vodka from a Wauwatosa grocery store Wednesday evening.

Aaron Taylor has been charged with retail theft, resisting arrest and bail jumping.

According to a Wauwatosa Police Department report:

Taylor tried to hide five bottles of vodka, worth $154, under his shirt at Metcalf's Sentry Foods, 6700 W. State St., at 8:41 p.m.

As he tried to leave the store, a security guard approached Taylor, so he took off running. He dropped the bottles in the parking lot, where a police officer joined the foot chase. Taylor ran down the embankment, swam across the river and hid in bushes on the other side until officers found him. However, he said he had been walking by the river and had fallen in, hit his head and was confused as to what he was doing there.

A background check showed Taylor was involved in eight prior retail thefts and three prior incidents of resisting arrest.

One of the officers was taken to Wisconsin Heart Hospital for the treatment of a pinched nerve that occurred while Taylor was being apprehended.

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