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San Francisco woman charged in string of Walgreens retail thefts

The Walgreens at 3398 Mission St. ranks high among the stores with the most reported thefts in San Francisco, according to police data. | Source: Garrett Leahy/The Standard

A San Francisco woman has been charged in connection with a series of retail thefts from three Walgreens locations that totaled approximately $34,000 in stolen merchandise, prosecutors announced Friday.

Savannah Church, 24, also known as Ashley West, pleaded not guilty Thursday to eight counts of organized retail theft, eight counts of second-degree commercial burglary and eight counts of grand theft, the San Francisco District Attorney's Office said.

Prosecutors say Church participated in eight incidents between June 10 and Sept. 4, in which she and others stole goods from Walgreens stores on Mission Street, Potrero Avenue and San Bruno Avenue.

READ MORE: Hanging Out at San Francisco’s Most Shoplifted Walgreens Stores

Street signs "30th St" and a Walgreens store with a red sign on a brick building, under a clear blue sky.
One San Francisco Walgreens is located at Mission and 30th streets. | Source: Isaac Ceja/The Standard

Police dispatch data from the San Francisco Department of Emergency Management analyzed by The Standard shows the two Walgreens with the most theft cases reported to police from January through May 2023 are on Mission Street.

Church was arrested without incident on Wednesday. A judge granted prosecutors' request to hold Church without bail pending trial because of the number of alleged incidents and because she has open cases in two other Bay Area counties.

District Attorney Brooke Jenkins said organized retail theft has a major impact on San Francisco residents, shoppers and businesses.

“Prolific, serial retail burglars have an outsized impact on our community and must be held accountable,” Jenkins said in a statement.

Her office said the investigation is ongoing and asked anyone with information to contact police.

Church is scheduled to return to court Oct. 10. It was not immediately known if she has an attorney who can speak on her behalf.

Joe Burn can be reached at