Polk detectives investigate ‘honey heist’

Polk County

LAKE WALES, Fla. (WFLA) – Who goes to a roadside honey store and steals honey? That’s what detectives at the Polk County Sheriff’s Office would like to know.

Two times this month, individuals have visited Struther’s Honey on State Road 60 east of Lake Wales and left with more honey than they paid for.

The business sells the honey on the honor system and is kept in a small unstaffed room in the front of the building. Honest customers pick out the jars of honey or beeswax they want and deposit the proper amount of money in the slot.

On July 6th, a man and a woman are caught on camera entering the store and taking armfuls of honey out of the front door. They do deposit some money. Investigators say they left $13 for $373 worth of honey.

On July 14th, a man is pictured on video walking out of the store with large jugs of honey. Detectives say he took $420 in honey and left $5.

Alden Struthers’ family has owned the business since 1935. He calls the thefts disappointing but is praying for the crooks. “We pray for the people’s souls. Revenge is God’s,” said Struthers. “I pray for their souls because they’re going to need it. “

Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd is a little less forgiving. He’s got a sweet place he’d like to house these three individuals: the Polk County Pokey. He believes the thieves plan to turn around and sell the honey themselves.

“I think this stuff will show up at a flea market. I mean, what else are you going to do with it,” asked Sheriff Judd. “Unless you’ve got a bear in the backyard… “

If you recognize any or all of these people, please contact Detective Gaylord at 863-678-4115, or to remain anonymous and be eligible for a cash reward leading to an arrest, contact Heartland Crime Stoppers – call 1-800-226 TIPS (8477).

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