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Video: How to steal from Neiman Marcus, starring state Senate candidate Mary Hayashi

There's newly-released video and stills of former Assemblywoman Mary Hayashi's shoplifting spree at San Francsco's Neiman Marcus store on Union Square in 2011, courtesy of a blogger's Freedom of Information Act request to SFPD.

Hayashi, aka "Mug Shot Mary," is running for the state Senate in the East Bay's District 10. It's her second attempt at a political comeback after making off with $2,500 worth of merchandise and being banned for life from the store. She earlier lost a bid to fill the Alameda County Board of Supervisors seat vacated after ex-supervisor Nadia Lockyer's drug-fueled sex scandal.

But Hayashi still has a formidable campaign war chest and seems hopeful--even with the stench of scandal particularly strong this year in the state Senate, the body to which she aspires--that voters will either forget or won't be turned off by her thefts.

The video won't help.

There's more than an hour of it posted at Margarita Lacabe's San Leandro Talk blog. You can view it here. (That's Hayashi, above, being hustled to a holding area by security personnel to await police.) Her senate opponent, Bob Wieckowski, has edited a two-minute version that's up on YouTube, complete with storyboard narration.

The video follows Hayashi from the time she enters the store to her exit and apprehension on the sidewalk by store security personnel who escort her back inside until cops arrive.

Despite pleading no contest as part of a plea deal that also reduced the charge from a felony to a misdemeanor, Hayashi has never owned up to stealing anything. She has preferred to describe the incident as a "mistake" and contends it was partly owing to being distracted at the check-out counter.

The video doesn't help that story line, either.

Ironically, her campaign just spent about $500,000 on an attack ad against Wieckowski, accusing him of exploiting the incident. She frequently dismisses talk of her shoplifting as an attempt to "smear" her.

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