Walmart worker face planted into shopping cart: Joe Lucero, Jose Cruz busted, 2 more sought

A Walmart employee definitely deserves a raise today (and every day -- but that's another story). Last week, he allegedly tried to stop three men with a load of stolen merch who triggered a garden-center alarm at a Jefferson County store. For his trouble, he was hit in the head and face planted into a shopping cart. But at least two of the four alleged suspects have been caught.

In custody are Joe David Lucero and Jose Cruz. Images of a third man were snapped by a surveillance camera, while a fourth person is thought to have been behind the wheel of a getaway car.

Look below to see images of Cruz and unidentified suspect number three, as well as a Jefferson County Sheriff's Office release with more details:

Walmart employee attacked by shoplifters

Sheriff's Office seeking assistance in identifying suspects

Jefferson County, Co. -- On August 20, 2010, Jefferson County Sheriff's Office deputies responded to the Walmart store located at 13240 W. Coalmine Ave. in reference to an assault.

Three Latino male shoplifters exited the garden center of the store pushing a shopping cart containing stolen merchandise. The merchandise set off the alarm when they exited the door, and a Walmart employee attempted to stop the men on the sidewalk in front of the store.

One of the men hit the employee on the side of the head, knocking him face-first into the shopping cart, and onto the ground. The employee suffered serious bodily injury in the attack.

Two of the three men have been arrested and are in custody in the Jefferson County Jail. The two arrested are:

Joe David Lucero, DOB: 08-05-76

Jose Antonio Cruz, DOB: 07-21-91

The third male is unidentified, and the Sheriff's Office is asking for the public's assistance in identifying him. He is described as a medium built Latino male with short dark hair. He was wearing a black t-shirt and dark pants. Five surveillance photographs of him are attached.

There was a fourth male involved who drove the get-away car. Surveillance film of him is not available.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts