A 21-year-old Columbia Heights man who was having trouble keeping his pants up in a parking lot is now in trouble with the law.
Eric Lee King, of Columbia Heights, faces one count of misdemeanor shoplifting and one felony count of possession of a controlled substance following the incident, which allegedly took place on Dec. 5 in Eagan. If convicted on the possession charge, King could face a maximum of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
Police say King left a local business with a stolen 19-inch flat screen television, a TV remote, brake fluid and power cords all stuffed down his pants. An officer, who initially stopped King to let him know that he had dropped a box of candy in the parking lot, allegedly became suspicious when he noticed that the defendant was having trouble walking and holding his pants up.
When the officer exited his car and identified himself as a police officer, King allegedly squatted down and put his hand down the front of his pants. For safety reasons, the officer handcuffed King.
During the arrest, the officer allegedly noticed that King had a large square item stuffed down the front of his pants. Upon searching King, the officer found the TV and other items in King's pants.
In addition to the stolen items, police say King also had two blue pills wrapped in plastic in his pocket. According to a criminal complaint released today by the Dakota County Attorney's office, the pills were later identified as Xanax, a controlled substance.
According to Minneota court records, King has previous convictions for possession of burglary tools and theft.