Shoplifter gets 20-year prison sentence

A habitual shoplifter was sentenced to serve 20 years in prison, according to an article in the Charlotte Observer, after being caught in Rock Hill, N.C., with stolen merchandise from a number of retail chains.

Donald Ray Altman, 48, received the sentence after a York County trial that ended in convictions on counts of shoplifting, possession of stolen goods and altering a license tag. Because of his lengthy criminal history for stealing, Altman faced up to 55 years in prison, according to prosecutors.

Altman was arrested May 10, 2010, after he was observed shoplifting merchandise and then leaving a Family Dollar Store in Rock Hill. The store manager called police with a description of Altman’s car and his license plate number.

A Rock Hill police officer apprehended Altman shortly afterwards in a nearby gas station. Inside Altman’s vehicle was stolen merchandise from a number of stores in the area, including Lowe’s, Walmart, CVS and Big Lots, according to authorities.