Police: Candle thief used bear mace on Florida mall patrons

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(Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

MIAMI (AP) – A Florida man stole candles from a mall store and sprayed dozens of patrons with bear mace repellent before escaping, police said.

Investigators say the theft happened Saturday afternoon at a Bath and Body Works store in a mall in the Doral suburb west of Miami. The unidentified suspect entered the store, filled a bag with candles and then started spraying people with mace.

About 35 people were affected, with some taken to a hospital for treatment. A portion of the mall was evacuated Saturday. Police say the suspect could face numerous armed robbery and aggravated battery charges once arrested.

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