Pepper spray turns Tacoma shoplifting into felony

TACOMA, Wash. — A shoplifting incident could send a Tacoma woman to prison for life without parole.

Police say Debra Genia Marzette used pepper spray April 7 on a drug store manager who tried to stop her from leaving without paying for a shopping basket of items, including a package of diapers.

The News Tribune reports she pleaded not guilty Monday to a robbery charge.

Pierce County prosecutors say the 50-year-old could be facing a life sentence because she already has two convictions — for robbery and burglary — under the “three strikes” law.

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