A Commerce man’s allegedly violent dispute with his fiancée wound up getting him charged not just with simple battery, but with shoplifting, theft by receiving, giving false information and on a warrant from Habersham County.
The suspect is Melvin Appleby, 36, of 56 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, Commerce.
The incident began with a call to a dispute at Appleby’s residence. The police officer found a 26-year-old white female who claimed Appleby, her fiancé, had struck her repeatedly during the night and that morning hit her in the temple with his fist. The officer noted bruises, according to the report.
Leaving the scene, the officer encountered Appleby walking along Homer Road, toward MLK, and noted that when Appleby made eye contact, he quickly looked away.
The officer stopped. He noticed that Appleby had bottles of body wash in three pockets, but Appleby claimed to be Charles Appleby, according to the officer’s account. The officer did not believe the man, but called another officer, who knew which Appleby was which and confirmed that the person was Melvin Appleby.
Appleby allegedly told police that a friend named “Charlie” gave him the body wash. Once the officer confirmed the correct identity, he arrested Appleby. During a search, he allegedly found three more bottles of the body wash — all from nearby CVS Pharmacy.
A store clerk confirmed that Melvin Appleby had been in the store and asked about shampoo and body wash. Shortly thereafter, the clerk said, the store theft alarm went off as Appleby exited the store. She confirmed that all of the containers of body wash were from CVS.
The officer charged Appleby with simple battery for the domestic incident and found that Appleby had an outstanding warrant from Habersham County.