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Thieves take baby formula from Wood River Walmart

9:37 PM, Jun 5, 2012   |    comments
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By Ann Rubin

Wood River, IL (KSDK) - They were caught on camera.

Now police want your help tracking down the thieves who hit the Wood River Walmart taking hundreds of dollars worth of baby formula.

The stuff is in high demand, fetching top dollar on the black market.

Some call it "liquid gold."

"Formula is very expensive," said parent Jackie Lerner.

And now baby formula has become the target of thieves around the country.

The most recent incident was at the Wood River Walmart.

Police say three men filled a large blue container with hundreds of dollars worth of formula Sunday, then drove off in a silver Mercury Grand Marquis. Their images were caught on surveillance video.

Authorities say formula has become a staple of shoplifting rings because it fetches such a high re-sale price.

They say it ends up in smaller stores, online or sometimes even overseas.

But they warn that the stolen formula can pose a health risk for babies, since it is sometimes stored incorrectly or sold after its expiration date.

"If I see someone selling formula I probably wouldn't buy it off a black market type of thing. You never know what anybody can do to it," said another parent, Aaron Barber.

Many stores in the area have taken to locking up their formula as a precaution.

This Walmart has not.

But some shoppers say they'd put up with a little inconvenience, if that's what it took to deter theft.

"It would be a pain but I would be willing to do it," said Lerner.

Authorities say the thieves also made off with a display full of the medication Prilosec. Anyone with information on the crimes is asked to call Wood River Police at 618-251-3114.

KSDK

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