You could say Brandon Shawhan's life wasn't going the way he might have planned it. For starters, the 24-year-old was stealing from stores at Rolling Acres Mall in Akron to survive. He had the racket down pretty well, too — jimmy the locks late at night, go on a quick shopping spree, and sneak off undetected.
Mall security couldn't figure out how the thief was getting in at night. The outside locks of the mall showed no signs of being tampered with. It wasn't until they set up a stake-out to catch the thief that they realized he wasn't sneaking into the mall — Shawhan was living inside the mall. In an abandoned Diamond Men's Wear store, they found a bed, a make-shift food pantry, and about $35,000 worth of looted electronics and other merchandise.
Unfortunately, with Shawhan in jail, Rolling Acres Mall, which has lost 70 percent of its tenants in recent years, has just taken another major hit to its occupancy rate. Mall officials are worried that the next to go may be Bernie the Parking Lot Strangler.
Catch the WKYC's video of the story here
. — Jared Klaus