Deputies Catch Serial Soap Stealers Near Santa Paula

Friday May 24, 2019

     The Ventura County Sheriff's Department says their deputies in the Fillmore area have caught two women believed to be suspects in the theft of laundry deterent and other items from stores in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties.

    The beginning of the end for 21-year-old Kayla Gularte of Santa Barbara and 22-year-old Kathryn Weaver of Bakersfield came Thursday afternoon.

    The two had been suspected of shoplifting a large amount of laundry detergent and other items from the Dollar General Store on Ventura Street (Highway 126) in Fillmore.

   Deputies say when a store employee tried to stop them outside the store, Gularte is alleged to have pepper sprayed and assaulted him before jumping into a vehicle with Weaver behind the wheel.

   As the vehicle sped away, the store called 9-1-1, reported what happened, and gave a detailed description of the getaway vehicle.

   Deputies spotted the vehicle traveling westbound on the 126 toward Santa Paula and near Santa Paula they made a high risk stop of the vehicle and took the two women into custody.

   Inside the vehicle deputies recovered stolen goods from the Dollar General along with more laundry detergent, women's undergarments, razors, and fragrances.

   In addition to the Dollar General shoplifting-turned robbery, the items were believed taken in other shoplifting incidents in Fillmore and Santa Barbara.

   Deputies say that laundry detergent has became a valuable item to steal from stores throughout Southern California as something that is traded on the street for money and drugs.

   Meanwhile, Gularte and Weaver were arrested with Weaver being held on $50,000 bail for felony conspiracy and misdemeanor shoplifting and Gularte also in the Ventura County Jail with bail set at $105,000 on charges of felony first degree robbery, felony conspriacy, felony child endangerment, misdemeanor shoplifting and felony misue of pepper spray.

   Both women are due in court Tuesday to be arraigned.