Florida waitress accused of stealing hundreds by changing customers’ tips

Crime

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – An Oviedo waitress is accused of stealing hundreds of dollars by altering the tips that her customers left on their bills, the Orlando Sentinel reported.

Chelsea Reed, 31, of Winter Springs, was arrested and charged with second-degree larceny/petit theft, a third subsequent offense, according to a police report.

Police say management at the Townhouse Restaurant launched an investigation after a customer was overcharged on a bill. Management later discovered more than 100 suspicious transactions involving Reed, in which she would scribble out the original tip and write in her own amount.

Police said Reed stole $292.60 from her customers between May and June 2019.

“Even after being presented several receipts which had clearly been altered, Chelsea denied any knowledge of the fraudulent activity,” according to the police report.

Reed later admitted to adding tips without the customer’s authorization, saying she needed the money to support her children.

Police said Reed has two prior theft convictions.

Townhouse’s manager said the restaurant would reimburse all customers affected.

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