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Ex-councilman Hallett faces theft charge

Medford police cited a former Medford city councilman on a misdemeanor theft charge after surveillance tapes from an antique market showed him tucking a print of an old Victrola advertisement into his coat and leaving without paying for it.

John Steven Hallett, 63, of the 500 block of Barnes Avenue, Medford, was cited and released Monday, Medford police Lt. Mike Moran said.

Antique sellers from the Collector's Market, a market with booths featuring wares from various vendors at 1233 Court St., Medford, reported the theft March 17, Moran said.

One of the market's vendors found a print of an advertisement for a Victor Talking Machine missing from a frame that had been knocked to the floor March 13. When the business owners checked surveillance videos from March 11, they saw a man they identified as Hallett removing the print. They called detectives.

When investigators visited Hallett, he gave them the print and another one, a portrait of an American Indian woman that he said was stolen also, Moran said. Police estimated the value of the two prints at &

36;32. Police cited him with third-degree theft because the total value was less than &

36;50.

Hallett served on the Medford City Council from 1978 through 1991 and from 1993 to 1997. He ran unsuccessfully for county commissioner in 2001.