A man initially charged with misdemeanor theft now also faces a misdemeanor bail-jumping charge, according to court documents.

Matthew William Cruz, 40, of Milwaukee originally faced one count of misdemeanor retail theft in a complaint filed in January in connection with the removal of two cell phones from the Durand Avenue Target, according to court documents.

Racine police responded to the Target on Nov. 16 after contact from a loss prevention officer at the store. The security guard told them a person he believed to be named “Matthew Cruz” had taken two cell phones – an LG K51 and a Samsung Galaxy A11 – from the electronics section, gone several aisles away, removed both phones from their packaging, and put them in his coat, according to the complaint.

Neither phone was ever recovered, according to the complaint.

Cruz was out on bond in another case filed on Nov. 23, 2019, in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin Circuit Court documents show, which led to the addition of the bail jumping charge, according to the complaint.

A review of Wisconsin Circuit Court records shows a man with Cruz’s name, address, and date of birth has open retail theft cases in Washington, Racine, and Milwaukee Counties for retail theft. In some court cases, Walmarts and Targets are identified as the targets.

Past convictions result in bail-jumping

Filings in the latest case show Cruz has past convictions for misdemeanor trespassing in Hillsborough County, Georgia in 2016, Felony Aggravated Kidnapping and Kidnapping in Cook County in 2012, and retail theft charges from Milwaukee County in 2007 and 2009.

Cruz is identified as a prisoner as of June 7, when he was listed in custody by the Racine Police Department and made an initial appearance.

As a result of the initial appearance, Cruz was released on a $100 cash bond, with a condition of release being no contact with Target or Rogan’s Shoes stores.

The retail theft charge for the most recent case carries a nine-month prison sentence and a fine of $10,000 on conviction. The bail jumping charge carries identical penalties.

 A status conference for the case is scheduled for Aug. 9 at 8:30 a.m.


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