LEWISTON — Police questioned a trio of teenagers Thursday night after a half dozen kids reportedly grabbed some soda from Angelo’s Pizzeria on Sabattus Street and fled on foot.

The three juveniles were charged with theft and released to their parents, police said later. The investigation was continuing later Thursday night.

The thieves made a few mistakes, according to witnesses. They didn’t take into account the surveillance cameras at the restaurant, they left a few personal items behind and they committed the act just as a police lieutenant was arriving to pick up his dinner.

The heist was reported just after 6 p.m. after the group of a half dozen kids tried to flee the restaurant with the stolen goods.

The restaurant owner tried to stop one of the culprits but came away with only the teen’s shirt. Police who were there seconds later took the shirt and other items left behind by the suspects into evidence.

Other officers, meanwhile, had fanned out in the area between Sabattus and Webster streets. Police almost immediately caught up with three teens running away from Angelo’s and toward Webster Street, officials said. A search of a backpack revealed a pair of stolen bottles of soda, police said.

“It was good work by the officers who apprehended them,” said Lewiston police Lt. David St. Pierre.

The suspects were described as roughly 13 years old.

It was St. Pierre who was picking up food about the time the theft was reported. His food was not among the stolen goods.

A worker at Angelo’s said the theft was not the first at the shop. Like several other businesses in and around downtown Lewiston, Angelo’s has been the target of grab-and-go style thefts. Over the past few years, several businesses have reported groups of young people coming into stores, with some distracting clerks while others grab goods — food and drink, typically — and flee.

Corner stores have been the main target of the thieves, but so have a few restaurants, including Davinci’s Eatery on Mill Street.

Last November, the 83-year-old owner of Speaker’s Variety on Spruce Street was shoved to the ground, her arm broken, while one her employees scuffled with a group of shoplifters.

Police were reviewing footage from security cameras and continuing to interview witnesses and suspects as their investigation into the Angelo’s theft continued.

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