MIDDLETOWN, OH (FOX19) - A regular customer the Corner Market II on Yankee Road in Middletown is now accused of stealing a donation jar from inside the store.
Employees say the man regularly comes to the shop, sometimes five or six times a day.
According to Savannah Heller, who works at the market, the man came in around 2 p.m. on Tuesday and asked to look at an item that was for sale. He then told Heller he would be right back with some money and left for a few minutes. When he returned, Heller said, he grabbed a donation jar off the front counter and made a run for it.
An employee and a store owner chased the man out of the store and down the street until they lost sight of him.
The entire encounter was captured on the store’s security camera system.
What the man is accused of stealing is sentimental. The store has been collecting donations in a jar for the family of someone who recently lost his life.
“A young man that passed away of a sudden death, and they had (donation jars) at a few stores because he was a regular here -- the guy that passed away," said Heller.
With the man’s funeral planned for Wednesday, his family was set to pick up the donations from the Yankee Road store on Tuesday.
“It’s sad that they didn’t get that," said Heller.
The incident has been reported to Middletown police. The shop owner said investigators have copies of the surveillance video.
“That the family gets some kind of justice out of it," said Heller. "That’s what I’m hoping for.”
More than anything, those who work at the shop said they would love to see the man in the video do what is right and bring the donations back.
“Give it back," said Heller. "It was for a family that really needed it, so I just pray for him, all of them involved.”
Employees do not know exactly how much money was in the jar, but said it was almost full. If you have any information on the crime or on the suspect, call police.