Dalton police seek Grinch who stole Christmas donations - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Dalton police seek Grinch who stole Christmas donations

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DALTON, GA. (WRCB) -- Police in Dalton are asking for the public's help identifying a man who stole Christmas.

The thief was caught on camera leaving a convenience store with a jar full of donations.

Investigators admit the dollar amount does not make this a serious crime, but they are eager to put the Grinch away, based on principle.

"We're hoping someone will recognize him and give us a call," says police spokesman, Bruce Frazier.

Dalton police say the man literally stole Christmas.

"Picked it up, slipped it underneath his arm, underneath a shirt that was hanging off his shoulder and walked out with it," Frazier says.

While surveillance cameras were rolling, the suspect took a donation jar from the counter of the East Walnut Avenue Kangaroo Express.

Employees had collected about $100 for families in need.

"Any kind of charity jar is really kind of a sacred thing," Phil Strickland says. "People helping people, and someone stealing that, that's a travesty."

Investigators are eager to make an arrest, and they believe they will.

Employees say they've seen the suspect before.

"Some of the employees recognized the individual as being somebody who would come through on a fairly regular basis," Frazier says.

The man has also been spotted panhandling outside a local Walmart story.

Frazier says no matter the reason for the crime, it's still a crime.

"The possibility exists that this was somebody that was desperately in need as a lot of people are these days," Frazier says. "But the fact is it's illegal to take something."

If you know the man in the picture, call Officer Ray Figg at (706) 278-9085, extension 139.

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