By Joe Beck
Front Royal police have arrested a town resident and charged him with four counts of petit larceny in the theft of four containers containing charitable donations from local businesses.
William "Roy" Jeffries, 23, 623 W 11th St., remained in jail on $1,500 secured bond after a bail hearing following his arrest.
Front Royal Police Chief Norman Shiflett said in a news release that officers arrested Jeffries late Wednesday night after he was identified from store surveillance footage.
Police said the thefts were committed Jan. 26 at the Handy Mart, 202 Commerce Ave.; Jan. 27 at the Mobil Gas Station, 63 W. 14th St.; Jan. 28 at Anthony's Pizza, 103 S. Royal Ave.; and Wednesday at the 7-Eleven, 711 S. Royal Ave. The containers held money designated for charities such as Relay For Life; The Children's Miracle Network; The House of Hope; and tips for employees.
In some cases, employees noticed a male taking the containers, and in others he was observed on videotape while taking containers.
Detective Crystal Cline said no determination has been made on the amount of money taken, although each of the four larceny counts is limited to sums of less than $5.
"When he was arrested, he had some cash on him that was put into evidence," Cline said of Jeffries.
Cline said storeowners and customers "were outraged that someone would take the donation jars people put money in for a worthy cause."
"We took it as a top priority," Cline said of the case. "We had quite a few people working on this to get it wrapped up by Wednesday."
Shiflett said other suspects may be involved. He asked anyone with additional information about the case to contact Sgt. Jason Winner at 635-2111.
Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or firstname.lastname@example.org