Walmart employee charged with stealing thousands of dollars in cash, merchandise

The 32-year-old woman is accused of taking nearly $13,000 from the Ladysmith Walmart.
Saybre Graeff
Saybre Graeff(Rusk County Jail)
Published: Dec. 14, 2022 at 11:06 AM CST
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LADYSMITH, Wis. (WEAU) - A woman is charged with stealing thousands of dollars in cash and merchandise from her employer in Rusk County.

32-year-old Saybre Graeff was charged Tuesday with theft of movable property between $10,000 and $100,000 in Rusk County Circuit Court.

According to documents filed with the charges, Graeff is accused of taking $12,928.60 worth of cash and merchandise between January and May of 2022 while she worked at Walmart in Ladysmith. A Walmart asset protection employee told Ladysmith Police that he had received a tip about an employee that was possibly responsible for missing cash from the registers and that he had recorded about $11,500 worth of thefts on video. The asset protection employee said that Graeff, who was working as a front end team lead, would do cash pickups from registers and only deposit part of the cash, taking the rest for herself.

In the criminal complaint filed with the charges, Graeff’s written statement admitted to taking merchandise shortly after being hired in December 2021, starting with smaller items such as clothing, before taking more expensive items, such as a DVD player, after her promoting in February 2022. The written statement also disclosed that Graeff began taking cash from the registers starting in April 2022, starting with the service desk. Graeff would take some of the cash and stick it into her vest pocket under the assumption that she was in an area where there were no security cameras. Graeff said she did this three to five times, taking about $13,000 to $15,000 between March and May 2022, starting with amounts around $500 before eventually taking the entire bag. Graeff said she took the money to pay for a lawyer, child expenses, food and a trip to Pennsylvania. She also said she took other items from Walmart during her time working there.

When Graeff was interviewed about the potential charges for theft, she said she intended to pay Walmart back but got behind in bills, according to court documents. Graeff offered to repay some of the amount before being taken into custody, handing the Walmart asset protection employee $3,800 in cash.

Graeff was taken into custody in June 2022 and later released on a $5,000 signature bond with a condition to have no contact with any Walmart store. Her next court appearance is scheduled for Jan. 31, 2023, according to online court records.