Jail, probation for woman who abandoned daughter at Safeway

Marcy Erico, the woman who allegedly used her 10-year-old daughter to steal groceries from the Tennant Station Safeway on Sept. 19, 2012, appeared in court to face criminal charges related to the incident Tuesday at the South County Courthouse.

Marcy Erico, the woman accused of abandoning her 10-year-old daughter at a Morgan Hill Safeway store after a botched shoplifting attempt, was formally sentenced to 60 days in jail plus three years probation at South County Courthouse Monday. 

Erico, 38 of Morgan Hill, pleaded no contest to second degree burglary and contributing to the delinquency of a minor at a January hearing in relation to the September 2012 incident at the Safeway store at Tennant Station. 

At the January hearing, also at South County Courthouse, Erico and prosecutors from the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office agreed to the 60-day sentence in exchange for the no contest plea. 

In addition to the time in Santa Clara County Jail and three years felony probation, Erico is also required to attend a 16-week theft awareness class and a 16-week parenting class, authorities said. 

She is also required to pay $141 in restitution to Safeway, according to South County Supervising Deputy D.A. Steve Lowney. 

Police responded to the Sept. 19 burglary incident at the Tennant Station Safeway store to find Erico’s daughter detained by store staff for attempting to steal a cart full of beer and other groceries.

An investigation determined that Erico and the girl had entered the store together, police said. The two filled a shopping cart with beer and groceries, and Erico instructed her daughter to wait inside the store with the cart while she retrieved the car.

When Erico pulled the car up to the store’s door, her daughter was instructed to push the cart out, and the two would load the stolen contents into the car, police said.

However, Safeway employees saw the girl attempting to leave with the groceries and stopped her, police said. Erico drove away, abandoning her daughter at the store.

Among the $150 worth of groceries was a 24-pack of beer, police said. Authorities added that Erico and her daughter committed a similar theft about a week earlier, making off with $60 worth of groceries in that incident at the same store.

Authorities caught up with Erico Sept. 28 at a hotel in Lyon County, Nev., where she had traveled with her 1-month-old son, police said. Erico was transported back to Santa Clara County, and the infant, who was unharmed, was returned to the custody of his grandmother. Her 10-year-old who was left at the store was released to the grandmother’s custody after the original theft.

Erico was not taken into custody at her sentencing hearing Monday, but was assigned a booking date to begin her 60-day jail sentence, Lowney said.