MARYLAND HEIGHTS, Mo. — Maryland Heights Police tell us they busted an alleged booze thief who opened a locked high-end liquor cabinet at the Schnucks store on Dorsett Road.  Charged last week, court documents show the man used a cellphone on multiple occasions to access the alcohol. Bottles in hand, police say, he puts them in a bag and walks out of the store.

“We want to use technology that will protect our product and also help our customers.” Said Schnucks Security Supervisor Abby Swanson-Paubel.

If wondering how exactly this new tech protects products or helps consumers, Swanson-Paubel has your answer.

“Anytime you can give the police extra information, besides just a photo or video, it always helps them in their case and that’s what we want to do.” Said Swanson-Paubel.

The cell phone number required to open the cabinet, coupled with an up-close view of the shopper, or shoplifter in this case, are valuable tools for law enforcement.

For law-abiding citizens, Schnucks says the technology provides convenience shoppers appreciate.

“Once they figure out they can put in their phone number, open the case and access it and not have to call somebody to help out. We see a lot of people who’re repeat customers because they know how to use the case.” Said Swanson-Paubel.

There’s another security measure being used inside Schnucks stores to prevent full cart roll outs.

“A criminal will enter the store, fill up on product that would be easily resold and then roll it directly out of the store, not paying for it. We discovered there’s some technology out there that would help combat this type of behavior. An alarm will go off and it will be an indication those items were never paid for and we can recover those products.” Said Matt Redmond, Schnucks Director of Security.

As the cart sign explains, the wheels lock up if a shopper hasn’t paid up.

“Most of the time, the thief just abandons the cart, goes outside, gets in their car and goes somewhere else. We’re not requiring our teammates to get in harm’s way or to stop anybody. The technology does that for us.” Added Redmond.

Two different technologies but the message is the same: If you want to steal, don’t shoplift at Schnucks.