I noticed him right away, when I approached the grocery store door and saw him standing outside; not smoking, no cart, just standing there, noticing me. I didn't think much of it at the time and simply went inside to grab a cart. As I steered the cart over the stupid brick-tiled floor towards the soda cases, I noticed the guy (heretofore nicknamed "Sneaky Pete") again; this time, ahead of me. I watched as Sneaky Pete went around behind the stack of soda cases and stopped. As I drew near, he stuffed something into his pocket, glanced around, and walked into the bathroom nearby. Suspicious, I walked around to that side of the soda cases and saw an out-of-place shopping basket with products in it. Clearly, Sneaky Pete was up to something! Had he come inside to retrieve something from his stashed basket, only to hide it better in the restroom?
I went to get a store employee. The first two I approached could not help me, but the third called someone, and while I waited, I saw Sneaky Pete come out of the bathroom and disappear into the store aisles. The employee who came to address me walked with me back to the soda area as I explained,
"He just looks really shifty; I saw him out front, first, kind of loitering. Then he came inside, and I saw him put something in his pocket and then look around before he went into the bathroom. He has a grocery basket stashed over there, too."
When we there, I didn't see Sneaky Pete and I saw that the shopping basket was no longer there. Apparently, he had decided to load up some more! The store employee asked me what Sneaky Pete was wearing, and I told him (jeans, a dark zip-up sweatshirt, dark-colored knit cap.) I told him I would just continue shopping and would call the store number if I saw Pete again. He asked me to first share my story with Security, who we then waited for.
A moment later, the staff member said, "Here he comes...."
And guess who walked up? (I'll give you a hint--He was wearing jeans, a dark zip-up sweatshirt, dark-colored knit cap.)
Sneaky Pete (basket and all)!
I guess I should have named him Not-So-Sneaky Pete!
(Boy, was he embarrassed.)