Teen caught shoplifting pepper sprays officers

Rayonna Ward

GUILDERLAND — Rayonna S. Ward was arrested at Macy’s in Crossgates Mall last week after she attempted to steal merchandise and then sprayed security officers in the face with pepper spray, police say.

Ward, 17, of 292 Sherman St., Albany was observed shoplifting in Macy’s around 12:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 13, according to a release from the Guilderland Police, and, when two loss-prevention officers attempted to detain her while they waited for a Guilderland Police officer to arrive, she sprayed pepper spray, which hit the security officers, another Macy’s employee, and a shopper.

Ward was taken into custody by a security officer, with the help of an off-duty police officer. The off-duty officer suffered a laceration to his wrist during the arrest, the release said. 

The loss prevention officers were taken to Albany Medical Center and Albany Memorial Hospital for treatment.

Ward was taken to the Guilderland Police Department and charged with four counts of second-degree assault, petit larceny, third-degree burglary, criminal possession of burglar tools, resisting arrest, second-degree reckless endangerment, unlawful possession of noxious material, and second-degree criminal nuisance — all misdemeanors.

A check also showed that Ward had two outstanding warrants, one from Guilderland for petit larceny and false impersonation — she was arrested in April for taking $378.49 worth of merchandise from Macy’s and giving police a false name and birth date — and one from the city of Albany for false impersonation.

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