Sparta man cited after opening packages, eating raw meat in store

Dennis Schaitel also accused of opening puzzles, returning them damaged

A Sparta man was cited for retail theft after being shown on video surveillance opening packages and either eating the contents or returning them damaged.

Sparta police said on April 9, a Walmart Loss Prevention employee reported two retail thefts involving Dennis Schaitel, 65. Sparta police tweeted (@spartawipd) about the case Friday, May 23.

On March 18, an employee discovered an empty meat package in a display cooler. The employee reviewed video surveillance and saw a man opening the package during the early morning of March 17 and then eating the raw meat. The man was also seen concealing packages of steaks behind coolers inside the store, then bought other items before going back and removing the hidden stakes. Sparta police identified Schaitel as the man in the video.

On March 22, Schaitel was also shown opening boxes of puzzles and returning them to the store shelf damaged.

Sparta police said Schaitel could not be located and a municipal citation was mailed to his last known address.