LAKEWOOD, Colo. (KDVR) — A customer at a Colorado eatery was caught on camera taking a donation jar meant for a grieving 6-year-old boy.
Footage obtained by KDVR caught a man taking his food from Chili Shack along with the full jar Friday afternoon.
“What shocked me was I see this man, he’s an elderly gentleman, he looks very well-groomed and taken care of,” said Leonardo Pina, a friend of the boy’s family. “He literally turned around and grabbed the bucket and walked away with it. It was a total shock he would just steal that. On the side of the thing, it said for a person that passed away.”
Pina had just put the jar out days ago to collect donations for the boy, who lost his father about a week ago.
“You didn’t take from us. You didn’t take from this restaurant. You took from a child that probably needed the money more,” Pina said.
Another camera captured the man leaving in what police describe as a silver or blue new model Toyota Tacoma.
“To see him get in the vehicle he got into was a shock,” Pina said. “In my eyes, it didn’t look like someone who really needed the money at this time.”
Chili Shack employee Letecia Olivas was just ending her shift around 1:45 p.m. Friday when the theft happened.
“It breaks my heart and I feel so sad that instead of helping, they take money from someone else,” Olivas said. “It was 20s, 10s and 5s, kind of around $200, $300.”
Pina is hoping the community can help catch the thief.
“It’s not about the money. It’s the point of what he did and took from a kid,” he said.
Lakewood Police believe the man, who appeared in the video to have gray hair and wearing a visor, is in his 50s. They said his Toyota Tacoma had a Utah license plate.
The boy’s family has shared a GoFundMe page, saying, “Anything helps.”