ST. LOUIS – A St. Louis County man will spend the next year of his life in federal prison for breaking into seven Missouri beauty stores over a two-month period in late 2020 and early 2021.

Prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Missouri said Demetrius Owens and a co-defendant, Ryan Jones, stole large quantities of perfume, men’s fragrances, and other beauty supplies from Ulta Beauty stores in six locations: Brentwood, Columbia, Chesterfield, Creve Coeur, Fenton, and Washington. The pair broke into a seventh store in south St. Louis County but did not take anything.

The break-ins occurred between Nov. 19, 2020, and Jan. 25, 2021, according to court documents.

Owens and Jones then sold the stolen merchandise on the black market through social media.

Owens pleaded guilty in May to a charge of wire fraud. He faced 12 to 18 months imprisonment.

Jones, 38, was already in jail in California on another charge.

A third co-defendant in the case, Leo Finerson Jr. of St. Ann, was sentenced this past May to 120 days in prison after pleading guilty to misprison of a felony. Prosecutors said Finerson, 37, posted some of the stolen items for sale on Facebook before removing that post in an attempt to conceal the crime.

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