Deputies: Husband coaches wife through shoplifting heist via tex - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Deputies: Husband coaches wife through shoplifting heist via text

Posted: Updated:
On top of finding Celeste and Russell Vanmeter in possesion of stolen property, Kootenai County Sheriff's Deputies found text messages between the two seemingly planning the heist On top of finding Celeste and Russell Vanmeter in possesion of stolen property, Kootenai County Sheriff's Deputies found text messages between the two seemingly planning the heist
HAYDEN, Idaho - It wasn't exactly a Bonnie and Clyde story or an Ocean's Eleven heist, but a husband and wife were arrested in Hayden on Friday in a shoplifting scheme that went bad according the the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office. 

The Sheriff's Office was notified by Walmart security that a woman named Celeste Vanmeter was shoplifting, and it appears her husband Russell was in the parking lot texting her instructions on how to do the deed. 

Security said the pair were suspicious inside the store and then they split up. Russell went out to the parking lot, and Celeste stayed inside the store, checking her phone, and filling her cart with various items, including paint buckets, light bulbs, a small heater and an XM stereo. Security then watched as Celeste left the store with at least $148 worth of stuff before they stopped her. 

Once deputies arrived and began their investigation, they asked Celeste if there was any evidence she and her husband had been planning to steal on her phone. Deputies said Celeste said no and gave them permission to look. The deputies then found the following text exchange between Celeste and her husband (Note* The text messages are written just the way deputies found them, with spelling errors):

Celeste: "I'm at Walmart."

Russell: "Go out the grocery and wait for a bunch of people to go threw and then merge with them." 

As Celeste was filling her cart, her husband relayed to her:

Celeste: "Parked at the end of outdoor living in row nine"

Russell: "If it don't feel right leave the basket and walk out."

The final message cited by Kootenai County Deputies stated: 

Celeste: "I can't find a place to do this."

Russell: "We're are you"

On top of the stolen items Celeste was caught with, deputies found a turkey fryer, heater, a target system, fryer oil and a stereo installation kit in Russell's possession in the parking lot. 

Both were charged with Petit Burglary. 

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Spokane almost dead last on Washington's safest cities list

    Spokane almost dead last on Washington's safest cities list

    Tuesday, February 20 2018 1:27 PM EST2018-02-20 18:27:47 GMT

    KHQ.COM - The National Council for Home Safety and Security has released the safest cities in Washington for 2018... and Spokane did not impress. To determine the order of the ranking the Council used data on the number of reported violent crimes and property crimes for every thousand people and also reviewed the most recent FBI Uniform Crime report. Spokane ranked almost dead last coming in at number 79 (there were only 80 cities on the list).

    >>

    KHQ.COM - The National Council for Home Safety and Security has released the safest cities in Washington for 2018... and Spokane did not impress. To determine the order of the ranking the Council used data on the number of reported violent crimes and property crimes for every thousand people and also reviewed the most recent FBI Uniform Crime report. Spokane ranked almost dead last coming in at number 79 (there were only 80 cities on the list).

    >>
  • Managers of Spokane Valley motel, 6 others arrested on drug and property crime charges following two-month investigation

    Managers of Spokane Valley motel, 6 others arrested on drug and property crime charges following two-month investigation

    Tuesday, February 20 2018 6:06 PM EST2018-02-20 23:06:06 GMT

    SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - A two-month investigation into criminal activity at the Red Top Motel in Spokane Valley resulted in a massive raid and the arrest of 8 people early Tuesday morning. The Red Top Motel has had more than 100 calls for service since the beginning of the year, with many of those calls resulting in the arrest of known criminals who commonly traffic in drugs and stolen property.

    >>

    SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - A two-month investigation into criminal activity at the Red Top Motel in Spokane Valley resulted in a massive raid and the arrest of 8 people early Tuesday morning. The Red Top Motel has had more than 100 calls for service since the beginning of the year, with many of those calls resulting in the arrest of known criminals who commonly traffic in drugs and stolen property.

    >>
  • UPDATE: Kent Police arrest man suspected of trying to rape barista

    UPDATE: Kent Police arrest man suspected of trying to rape barista

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 1:23 PM EST2018-02-21 18:23:24 GMT

    KENT, Wash. - Kent police said they arrested a man Wednesday morning who was seen on surveillance video early Tuesday breaking into a bikini barista stand and abducting the barista at knifepoint before trying to rape her outside. The arrest was made after investigators received multiple tips identifying the suspect. 

    >>

    KENT, Wash. - Kent police said they arrested a man Wednesday morning who was seen on surveillance video early Tuesday breaking into a bikini barista stand and abducting the barista at knifepoint before trying to rape her outside. The arrest was made after investigators received multiple tips identifying the suspect. 

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Bill targeting rape kit payments headed to Idaho Senate

    Bill targeting rape kit payments headed to Idaho Senate

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 5:37 PM EST2018-02-21 22:37:38 GMT

    BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Idaho lawmakers have advanced legislation that would change how the state pays for the collection of evidence in sexual assault investigations. State law currently says the cost of a rape kit is first billed to a sexual assault victim's health insurance and any remaining costs are then picked up by the state. Sexual assault is the only crime in Idaho where the victim's insurance is billed for collecting forensic evidence.    Rep. Melissa Wint...

    >>

    BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Idaho lawmakers have advanced legislation that would change how the state pays for the collection of evidence in sexual assault investigations. State law currently says the cost of a rape kit is first billed to a sexual assault victim's health insurance and any remaining costs are then picked up by the state. Sexual assault is the only crime in Idaho where the victim's insurance is billed for collecting forensic evidence.    Rep. Melissa Wint...

    >>
  • 8-year-old Ohio boy fears being hurt, takes gun to school

    8-year-old Ohio boy fears being hurt, takes gun to school

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 5:21 PM EST2018-02-21 22:21:35 GMT

    SPRINGFIELD, Ohio (AP) - An 8-year-old Ohio boy who had an unloaded gun in his backpack has told police he brought the weapon to his elementary school because he thought another student was going to hurt him

    >>

    SPRINGFIELD, Ohio (AP) - An 8-year-old Ohio boy who had an unloaded gun in his backpack has told police he brought the weapon to his elementary school because he thought another student was going to hurt him

    >>
  • California school guard acted on student's shooting threat

    California school guard acted on student's shooting threat

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 5:18 PM EST2018-02-21 22:18:32 GMT

    WHITTIER, Calif. (AP) - Southern California authorities say they took action immediately on a student's threat to open fire at his high school even though he claimed it was a joke. Security officer Marino Chavez told reporters Wednesday that when he overheard the threat last week, he asked the student about it and the teen confirmed that he threatened a shooting within three weeks.

    >>

    WHITTIER, Calif. (AP) - Southern California authorities say they took action immediately on a student's threat to open fire at his high school even though he claimed it was a joke. Security officer Marino Chavez told reporters Wednesday that when he overheard the threat last week, he asked the student about it and the teen confirmed that he threatened a shooting within three weeks.

    >>