PROVIDENCE - Two suspects have been arrested and a third is being sought in connection with the theft of $90,000 worth of diapers that were to be delivered to the Amazon distribution center in Fall River, according to Maj. Dennis Fleming, Detective Commander of the Rhode Island State Police.
Detectives recovered about 800 boxes of diapers during a raid earlier today at a Smith Street storefront, but 1,200 additional boxes have not yet been recovered, Major Fleming said.
The two men arrested and held for arraignment were:
• Aubrey Bettis, also known as Mitchell Bettis, 59, of 198 River Avenue, Providence, was charged with larceny over $1,500 and conspiracy
• Damon Martin, 41, of 200 Goldfinch Drive, Coventry, was charged with larceny over $1,500; receiving stolen goods; and conspiracy.
A warrant has been issued for a third suspect.
Fleming said Bettis had been hired by the owner of the delivery truck to drive the load of diapers from a location in Pennsylvania to the Amazon distribution facility last Thursday (Feb. 9). But when he arrived in Rhode Island that night, he instead allegedly sold the diapers. On Monday, Bettis allegedly called the truck's owner to say he was not making the delivery and that the truck could be picked up in the parking lot of the Super Eight Motel in West Greenwich.
The owner of the truck, whose name was not released, immediately flew to Rhode Island and found the empty truck, Fleming said. He notified state police, who later tracked down and arrested the driver.
Police later learned that some of the diapers were being stored in an empty storefront at 451 Smith St. in Providence. After obtaining a search warrant, detectives went to the store about 11:15 a.m. today and recovered 800 boxes of diapers, Fleming said. Each box, which held about 100 diapers, sold for about $40.
State police are still searching for the third suspect, as well as the rest of the diapers, Fleming said.