Real Crime

Winona Ryder and 7 Other Celebrities Who Have Been Caught Stealing

Winona Ryder Shoplifting Trial - Sentencing
Actress Winona Ryder listens to arguments during the sentencing phase of her shoplifting trial in December 2002. Photo by Steve Grayson/WireImage.
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    Winona Ryder and 7 Other Celebrities Who Have Been Caught Stealing

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      Maria Ricapito

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      Winona Ryder and 7 Other Celebrities Who Have Been Caught Stealing

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      July 14, 2020

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      A+E Networks

On July 20, 2017 O.J. Simpson was granted parole after serving almost nine years of a 33-year sentence for the 2007 armed robbery of sports memorabilia. He could be released as early as October 1. With “The Juice” back in the news, we’re reminded of some other famous folks who have gotten in trouble for supposedly sticky fingers.

Winona Ryder
The Stranger Things star’s week-long shoplifting trial in 2002 ended with a guilty verdict on the charges of grand theft and vandalism, for walking away with more than $5,500 in merchandise from Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills. She was found not guilty of commercial burglary, which would have required proof that she entered the store intending to steal. The store’s security chief reportedly testified that the actress told him the theft was just her way of getting into character for a role. She received three years probation, plus community service and drug and psychological counseling.

Lindsay Lohan
In 2011, Lohan was charged with felony grand theft after walking out of a Venice, California boutique wearing a $2,500 necklace she hadn’t paid for. Lohan later pleaded no contest to misdemeanor theft, a lesser charge, and was sentenced to 120 days in jail plus community service. After about a month, she was released from jail due to overcrowding and served the rest of her sentence under house arrest. In 2014, a judge ended her probation for this case, while she continued community service and counseling for another criminal matter.

Farrah Fawcett
The 1970s pin-up and Charlie’s Angel was reportedly arrested twice in 1970 for shoplifting clothing from two boutiques. She claimed that she was merely taking the law into her own hands when the store refused to exchange items she’d previously purchased.

Amanda Bynes
In October 2014, the former Nickelodeon star reportedly walked out of upscale Manhattan department store Barneys New York wearing a $200 hat she hadn’t paid for. An NYPD spokesperson told People magazine that they responded to a petit larceny. Bynes later claimed it was a misunderstanding and that she had planned to pay. According to the NYPD, she signed an agreement banning her from the store.

Jacob Harris
Harris, former Deadliest Catch star, was arrested in Phoenix, Arizona in April 2017. A woman he had been traveling with reported that Harris had stolen her car, keys and some cash. He claimed he had her permission to drive the car. Police found him at a convenience store, where they arrested him for suspicion of felony theft, possession of dangerous drugs and illegal possession of prescription drugs. In May, Harris reportedly didn’t show up for a court hearing, and an arrest warrant was issued. According to the Maricopa City Police Department website, the warrant is still active as of the publication date of this post.

Sonny Liston
In 1950, as a young man, Liston was sentenced on two counts of armed robbery and two counts of larceny. He began boxing while serving his five-year sentence in the Missouri State Penitentiary and captured the attention of people in the boxing world outside of prison. In October 1952 boxing promoter Frank Mitchell and trainer Monroe Harris helped secure parole for Liston. In 1962, Liston defeated Floyd Patterson to become World Heavyweight Champion, a title he held for 17 months—until losing it in abrutal six rounds to Cassius Clay (later known as Muhammad Ali) in 1964.

Denny McLain
The pitcher who spent 10 years in the Major Leagues, most notably on the Detroit Tigers, was convicted in 1996 of embezzling $3 million from an employee pension fund. (Charges had included money laundering, mail fraud, theft and conspiracy in connection with the theft.) He served six years. The 1968 American League MVP and two-time Cy Young Award winner (1968 and 1969) had already served time in the mid-80s on racketeering and drug trafficking charges. The 73-year-old currently hosts a Detroit radio talk show on life and politics.

Jennifer Capriati
On December 10, 1993, the 17-year-old tennis phenom and a friend were trying on some inexpensive rings in a Florida mall. Capriati—who at age 14 had beco me the youngest player to break into the tennis world’s top 10—walked away from the vendor without returning a ring. Police were called and she was given a citation for shoplifting, a misdemeanor in the state. A statement from her father, Stefano, and her agent, Barbara Perry, said Capriati simply forgot she was wearing the ring, which was reportedly worth $15. She was charged as a juvenile and, because of her clean record, only received a private reprimand in Family Court.

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