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Hundreds stolen from Sarasota veterans group at booth outside Publix

Posted at 6:35 PM, Jul 19, 2018

SARASOTA, Fla. — Sarasota deputies said Bryon Wyatt stole about $240 from a volunteer collecting money for the group Veteran’s Outreach. The elderly volunteer was working at a booth outside the Publix's on Fruitville Rd. when the crime happened.

“That money could have paid for a veterans utility bill,” said volunteer Bob Graham. 

Wyatt was eventually arrested. Deputies said he used the money to buy drugs.

“The opioid crisis we have here in the U.S. and in Florida has caused this to happen,” said Sheriff Tom Knight.

Knight’s office collected $500 to give back to the charity.

“These people go out and volunteer their time to take care of our veterans and we wanted to do something to make sure they were made whole,” said Knight.

Wyatt is charged with theft and possession of a controlled substance.