A donation box full of cash meant to help animals was swiped Sunday night from the North Kingstown Animal Hospital. The robbery was caught on the veterinarian's security camera.
At first glance the man in the video looks like any pet owner waiting for service, but then you notice there is not cat in a crate and no dog at his feet. After a few moments spent looking around the man picks up a donation box off the counter and walks right out the front door. The donations would have helped pay for vaccinations, or food for needy animals
"I was absolutely appalled," said Karen Kupersmith, attorney for Pet Refuge, the organization the money was meant for.
"The collection box is on the counter all year round and people give so generously to them, and to think that somebody could just walk in and walk away with it, it's pretty disgusting," said Lori Caruana, owner of the North Kingstown Animal Hospital.
The door to the hospital was unlocked for a short window of time while the cleaning crew was inside. The robbery took less than a minute. The suspect got away with several weeks worth of donations.
"We had actually just called them to say, you guys, your box is getting pretty full, come empty it out," said Caruana.
When shelter workers came to collect the funds on Monday morning they noticed the box was missing. The animal hospital reviewed the security footage and discovered what happened and police were notified.
The refuge works on a shoe string budget. They rely on donations from the community. The theft comes at the worst possible time. The North Kingstown shelter is already underwater after having a pipe burst in their building. That incident cost them thousands of dollars in repairs.
"No one wants to prosecute you. No one wants to bother you. Just return the money," said Kupersmith speaking to the man in the video.