‘Operation Grinch’ nets nearly 60 arrests before holidays

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Law enforcement from Memphis, Bartlett and Shelby County teamed up last week to target repeat offenders who are likely to steal holiday cheer this year.

Police say they arrested 59 offenders suspected of involvement in theft, burglary and shoplifting cases, including William Canada, a person of interest in the car burglary case of a St. Jude marathon family.

“The last few weeks have bee miserable and this is the only thing that would’ve brought me any joy. It’s been ruined," said Sarah Halter, the mother of Austyn Halter who died of cancer shortly before the race.

Canada faces multiple charges including carjacking and burglary.

“These people have a history of stealing during this time of the year and all of the year. We’re just trying to cut down on some of the retail theft," Shelby County Chief Deputy Floyd Bonner said.

Deputies said they made 40 felony and 19 misdemeanor arrests and recovered five stolen cars and one stolen gun.

They said Operation Grinch was so successful, they plant to do it every three months moving forward.