Bold thief takes diabetic toddler's donation jar, gets away with $15

CHEVIOT, OH (FOX19) - A bold thief was recently caught on camera stealing from a donation jar for a toddler recently diagnosed with diabetes.

It happened at the Santorini Family Restaurant in Cheviot.

It appears to be a teen in the surveillance video. She sits alone and waits for the server to go in the back before reaching for the donation jar and grabbing all the cash. Then she takes off with the servers chasing her close behind.

"I was absolutely stunned. I couldn't believe somebody would take money from a little girl like that," said Dori Hall.

She is a server at Santorini Family Restaurant. She was just finishing her shift on Saturday when the teen came in eyeing the donation jar.

"She said she was waiting on her ride so we weren't going to kick her out onto the street if she was waiting on a ride," said Hall.

A kind gesture that left the staff shortchanged. The donation jar has been at the Santorini Family Restaurant for a month.

Megan Whaley put the jar in the restaurant to raise money for an upcoming fundraiser with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation after her 3-year-old daughter Nora was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.

"It's been a tough road. We found out in December she was diabetic. It's definitely been an adjustment," said Whaley.

The community has donated generously to the cause in the past few weeks collecting more than $100.

"I can't believe someone would take the money that they have put in the jar -- it just breaks my heart," said Whaley.

She goes to the restaurant each Saturday to empty the jar. She had left a few hours before the thief came in and swiped the cash.

Soon after the incident, she got a text from the owner of the restaurant.

"He messaged me. He said good thing you emptied out the jar before you left because the woman stole the money, so good thing you got a good amount of money out of there before she got away with a lot," said Whaley.

The teen got away with about $15.

"I just hope this girl knows what a terrible thing she did and I hope she feels guilty and that they can continue to raise money for Nora," said Hall.

The donation jar is back up at the restaurant. The staff is keeping a closer eye on it to prevent another theft. Anyone who recognizes the teen in the video is asked to call the police.

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