A 24-year-old Arizona woman could be facing over 15 years in prison after allegedly assaulting an employee during an attempted robbery at Brookfield Square.
Michelle New has been charged in Waukesha County Circuit Court with robbery with use of force, resisting an officer and possession of drug paraphernalia.
According to a criminal complaint, New was attempting to steal merchandise from Boston Store, 15875 W. Bluemound Road, on the afternoon of Sunday, March 12.
City of Brookfield police were originally called after an employee reported that New was committing retail theft by removing tags and putting merchandise in a backpack and was currently in a store fitting room. During the call, the caller reported that New had run out of the fitting room and exited the store.
According to the complaint, a loss prevention employee then confronted New and identified herself as store security. The employee asked New to come back into the store, but she refused and began walking away. At this time, the employee attempted to detain New.
According to the complaint, New tried to pull away and then struck the employee with a closed fist in the face. The employee told police that New proceeded to grab her by the hair and continuously strike her in the head. Two bystanders in the parking lot arrived and separated them.
The employee told police that at this time New told the bystanders that they had been fighting over a man. According to the complaint, the employee identified herself to the bystanders as store security at which time New also tried to claim that she was store security.
Upon arrival, according to the complaint, police observed that New had sustained injuries to her hand and that the loss prevention employee was holding her head and appeared “to be on the verge of crying.” According to the complaint, police observed that the left side of the employee’s face was red and there appeared to be scratches near her neck.
Officers later spoke with a second employee who had been in the loss prevention office watching video surveillance and told police that she had seen New selecting a number of items including merchandise from the women’s and junior's departments and a cologne tester.
According to the complaint, while police were attempting to take New into custody, she continuously asked, “Don’t you know who I am?” and implied that she was a politician.
Police recovered the backpack that New had been carrying and discovered 15 items taken from Boston Store with a total value of $734.13. Some of the items had been destroyed due to the sensors having been ripped off.
According to the complaint, police also later discovered a crack pipe which New admitted was hers and that she used to smoke crack cocaine.
New’s cash bond has been set at $10,000 and she is scheduled to appear in court for a review hearing March 30.