Police say suspect is caught on camera taking iPad belonging to child with autism

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MANSFIELD, Ohio-  A child with autism loses an iPad she uses to communicate, and it’s then stolen from the Walmart in Mansfield.

However, quick work by Walmart management and Mansfield police led to an arrest and the recovery of the iPad.

Investigators say the child was shopping with her family at the Walmart on Possum Run Road last Friday, when she misplaced the device. A review of surveillance video from the store revealed that after one shopper placed the iPad on a shelf, a second shopper picked it up and hid it under other items he was buying.

Detective Frank Parrella told FOX 8, "He proceeds to go through the check-out, still concealing this iPad, and then he leaves the store without turning it in."

The thief was then captured on camera leaving the Walmart parking lot in a white pick-up truck. Detective Frank Parrella says he was on his lunch break when he saw a white pick-up truck in front of a tattoo shop in Mansfield. Parrella says when he went inside, 34-year-old Kyle Kent was holding an iPad. "He was sitting there going through the iPad, and I said, 'Were you at Walmart today?' and he said, `Yeah,' and I said, 'Did you find something there or take something?' and he said, 'I was- found this out in the parking lot,' which we knew wasn't true. From there, it went downhill pretty fast."

Police say Kyle Kent deleted some of the files on the iPad, but he told investigators that he had no idea that it belonged to a child with autism. Kent was charged with theft, and the iPad was returned to the girl who needs it.

Detective Parrella told FOX 8, "It meant a lot to me. It's one of, you know, you're out there catching people that rob banks and steal from this or break into that, but this is satisfying to me."

The child’s mother wrote on Facebook that she is grateful for the fast work by Walmart management and Mansfield police.

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