Sacto 9-1-1
February 28, 2013
Electric shopping cart driver placed under arrest in Sonora

A man was arrested for traveling Sonora streets on a stolen electric supermarket shopping cart, police said.

Country singing great George Jones once related how his then-wife Tammy Wynette took his car keys away, so he headed down the road for a drink on his riding lawn mower. John Mathews, 77, didn't have a drink in mind when he was stopped at 1 a.m. Wednesday on Mono Way in the Toulumne County Gold Rush of Sonora on a motorized Safeway grocery cart.

Police said he told officers that the store had given him the cart, valued at $1,000, because he can't walk very well. Mathews couldn't supply the name of the employee who gave him permission to drive the cart off store property.

The officer contacted a Safeway representative who said Mathews did not have authority to take the cart off store property, and that employees were not aware it was missing, police stated in a press release.

The cart was returned to Safeway and Mathews was booked on suspicion of possession of stolen property.

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