Amherst woman charged in thefts

NORTHAMPTON — A shoplifting incident Monday night at Faces on Main Street led to the arrest of an Amherst woman police say was involved in separate thefts at the Maplewood Shops in Northampton and at a retail store in Hadley over the weekend.

Julie E. McKenzie, 26, of 98 Village Park Road, Amherst, faces charges of shoplifting by concealing merchandise; possession of a class E drug (quetiapine fumarate, used to treat bipolar disorder); two counts of receiving stolen property over $250; three counts of check forgery; and marijuana possession less than one ounce.

Police responded to Faces around 3 p.m. Monday and arrested McKenzie on the shoplifting charge connected to allegations that she made off with $55 worth of clothing and hats.

During booking, officers found identification and insurance cards and a pocketknife belonging to a victim who had those items stolen last Friday while shopping at the Dollar Tree in Hadley. They also found four rent checks made out in small amounts to the Maplewood Shops, three of which McKenzie forged by using the Hadley victim’s name, police said.

Officers obtained a warrant to search McKenzie’s residence early Tuesday morning, where they found additional items allegedly stolen from the Maplewood Shops. Police continue to investigate the incidents.

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