PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — Christina Hall said she experienced a range of emotions over the past week, but most recently, she said she is angry and upset.
Hall manages the Hungry Howies store at 4690 49th Street North in unincorporated Pinellas County. Last Thursday, a man came in, ordered a pizza, then took off with her employee’s money from the tip jar on the store counter.
Hall said it appeared the man had a plan.
“Got his food, another customer walked in. So, he stalled and asked questions, and then as soon as the other customer left he kind of looked around the corner and had his box here,” Hall said. “took everything that was in the jar.”
Hall explained she and her employees didn’t even realize what happened until closing.
“When they went to split tips at the end of the night, there was two dollars left in the jar at the end of the entire shift,” she said.
What’s worse, she viewed a video from another camera that showed the crook taking off in a newer model Toyota sedan.
Lisa Mascotti owns Palmer Hardware, a few doors down from Hungry Howies. She called the theft outrageous.
“It’s just sad. It’s just taking advantage of the community because that’s what we do is serve the community,” Mascotti said. “It’s just crazy, it happens all the time. We had somebody come in and steal a bunch of drill bits and try and return them, when we knew we hadn’t sold them.”
Hall reported the theft to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office. A representative with the sheriff’s office confirmed there is an active investigation into the theft. Anyone who recognizes the man pictured in the video is urged to give the sheriff’s office a call.
“For us to be stolen from like that, we take that very, very personally,” Hall said. “Because we work hard. We work hard to provide an environment where we can build a connection with our customers that they want to come back and see us.”