The Alexandria Town Talk is reporting that Francis Keller was charged with taking the lawnmower, valued at over $1,500 from Sutherlands Home Improvement Center on MacArthur Drive in Alexandria. Managers of the store said surveillance video shows Keller, on Sept. 4,, having employees of the store load the machine onto his vehicle and left the store. He said he left a check on the counter for $4,100, but the video does not back up his story.
City police spokesman Bruce Fairbanks said the arresting officer's report stated Keller, 36, had earlier visited Sutherlands on Sept. 3 to look at the mower. He returned on Sept. 4th and picked up the mower. Keller returned to the store at about 6:15 p.m. same day to find managers already had summoned police. Keller told them he test drove the mower and had left the check on the counter, an account that was disputed by the video, the report stated.
Keller, who served at least one term as an Avoyelles Parish Police Juror, is a Bunkie businessman who operates a quick loan company
Keller was booked on a charge of theft greater than $1,500.