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Former Target security agent arrested in thefts

A former Target store security guard, who was let go after he was accused of being a little too rough with a shoplifter, was arrested on shoplifting charges of his own on Saturday evening. Joseph Servizio, 32, of 5 Robb Road, Beverly, and Jason Stone, 37, of 12 Grant St., Beverly, were arrested — Stone after a foot chase that led into a yard on Berrywood Lane, shortly after 6 p.m. Police had spotted the pair on Highland Avenue near Willson Street after getting a report of shoplifters at the Target store on Highland Avenue.

When the vehicle they were in finally stopped, police said, Stone bailed out of the passenger side and took off, pursued by Patrolman Fred Ryan. As it turns out, Servizio was a former store security guard at the Target in Revere, where, Salem police learned, he had been let go after “slamming” a suspected shoplifter to the floor, according to a police report.

A security officer at the Salem store knew Servizio and was also aware that he was suspected of stealing from other Target stores, police said in their report. The security officer said he knew Servizio was in the store and began watching as he signaled Stone to take a Polaroid video game system valued at $157.48 and a pink backpack worth $10.

Stone pleaded not guilty at his arraignment in Salem District Court yesterday, where he was ordered held on $2,500 cash bail. Servizio, who made bail over the weekend, is expected to appear in court today for arraignment.