aid to president bush gives tips on how to shoplift stuff and return it. According to the Montgomery County police, the manager of a Target store spotted Allen strolling the aisles with an empty Target bag in his shopping cart. The manager watched as Allen placed items in the Target bag, then went to guest services and presented a receipt to receive a refund for those items.
Ex-aide's arrest shocks Bush
Nicole Gaouette Los Angeles Times Mar. 12, 2006 12:00 AM
WASHINGTON - President Bush expressed disappointment, sadness and shock Saturday over the arrest of former domestic policy adviser Claude Allen, who resigned in February, citing a need to spend more time with family.
Allen, 45, was arrested in suburban Maryland on Thursday for stealing from Target and other stores in what authorities say was a scheme that lasted months and netted him more than $5,000 in goods that ranged from a Bose home theater system to $2.50 trinkets, police said.
"If the allegations are true, something went wrong in Claude Allen's life, and that is really sad," Bush said Saturday at the White House. "When I heard the story last night I was shocked. And my first reaction was one of disappointment, deep disappointment. . . . Shortly thereafter, I felt really sad for the Allen family."
The arrest marks an Icarus-like fall for Allen, a conservative star and born-again father of four who rose from a working-class childhood in the nation's capital to become one of the administration's most senior Black members. Bush twice nominated Allen to a federal appeals court seat.
Allen was arrested Friday in an affluent Maryland suburb north of Washington and released on his own recognizance. His police mug shot shows him somber, collar askew and eyes averted from the camera.
He faces two charges of theft and the purported scheme, both of which carry maximum penalties of a $25,000 fine and 15 years in prison. His lawyer did not return calls for comment.
According to the Montgomery County police, the manager of a Target store spotted Allen strolling the aisles on Jan. 2 with an empty Target bag in his shopping cart. The manager watched as Allen placed items in the Target bag, then went to guest services and presented a receipt to receive a refund for those items.