NORTH COVENTRY — Police have charged a woman working as a loss prevention officer for Kohl’s at the Coventry Mall with assault of a local photographer.
Sarah Roller, 36, from Collegeville, reported she saw a man in his vehicle taking video of “police and her activity” while she was helping search for a suspect in a retail theft from Boscov’s, police said.
Roller is accused of approaching the photographer, Tom Kelly III, and attempted to take his camera “by force.” Kelly is a former Mercury staff photographer and frequently does work as a free-lancer for The Mercury and its related websites.
“During the struggle over the camera, the victim was struck in the face,” the report said. “He sustained an injury to his eye and is also being treated for neck and shoulder pain.”
Chief Robert Schurr reportedly saw what happened and stepped in to stop the struggle.
Police said the victim’s camera “captured portions of the incident.”
In court documents filed Sept. 5, Roller stands charged of two felony counts of robbery, two misdemeanor counts of simple assault, misdemeanor criminal mischief and one summary count of harassment.
She was arraigned Friday and released on $50,000 unsecured bail.
The search which touched off the incident occurred when Trenton Lee Clifford, 19, of Pottstown, allegedly took merchandise from the Coventry Mall’s Boscov’s with a 17-year-old accomplice and tried leaving the store.
Loss prevention officers stopped them, at which point police said the 17-year-old gave himself up. Clifford, a former stand-out wrestler at Pottstown High School, allegedly ran.
He was later located in woods down the embankment of Route 100 off of River Road and put into police custody.