Former Kmart employee charged with theft at Juneau store

Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2002

JUNEAU (AP) -- A former security supervisor for Kmart was charged with theft earlier this month after he was denied entry into Canada carrying $33,000 in cash.

Frank Brian Rowcroft, 28, of Juneau was stopped May 3 near the Alaska-Canada border close to Point Frasier after Canadian customs officials stopped Rowcroft and girlfriend Alia McAllister, 25, and sent them back to the U.S. Customs checkpoint.

A search of Rowcroft's car revealed more than $33,000 in cash, Skagway Police Chief Dennis Spurrier told the Juneau Empire.

Skagway officers were summoned and they charged Rowcroft with first-degree theft. McAllister was taken into custody and later released. No charges are pending against her, according to the district attorneys office.

Rowcroft is being held on a $50,000 cash bond at Lemon Creek Correctional Center.

According to an affidavit from assistant district attorney Sue McLean, Juneau police on March 31 received a report that about $99,000 in cash, checks and credit card slips had been stolen from the Kmart cash room during a power outage between 4:55 a.m. and 5:55 a.m.

McLean said an investigation showed the power outage occurred because the breakers were turned off. Rowcroft, a risk management supervisor, was familiar with security procedures and was responsible for surveillance equipment, she said.

Kmart manager Eric Harell told police he was the only person who had a key to the cash room during that shift, but had forgotten it that night and asked Rowcroft to pick it up for him around 6 a.m. Harell told police Rowcroft picked up the key from Harell's girlfriend, never gave it to him and then denied picking it up.

Kmart fired Rowcroft a week after the incident.

Canadian customs officials stopped Rowcroft's vehicle because of its defective vehicle registration.

Upon returning to U.S. soil, Rowcroft told a customs officer he was carrying several thousand dollars in cash. He also told customs officials he was going to Anchorage.

Seeing no luggage, an officer searched the vehicle and discovered the money hidden under carpet in the truck.

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