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Thief steals Salvation Army Red Kettle from metro Detroit Kroger location

Posted at 4:15 PM, Nov 22, 2017

Salvation Army Red Kettle bell ringers started ringing outside of stores on November 10, but Red Kettle in Grosse Pointe Woods has already become the victim of theft.

When a bell ringer needed a bathroom break, she went inside the Kroger on Mack Avenue for a few minutes.

When she came back out, the kettle and the stand were gone.

She saw someone drive off with it.

Capt. Kelsie Moreno of the Salvation Army Conner Creek Corps Community Center said, "Someone drove off with our kettle stand, the kettle, and the donations inside of it."

"Broad daylight, crowded parking lots," Capt. Moreno said. "The kettle stand weighs about 100 pounds. It is not an easy thing to take, but somebody was very determined to make off with it yesterday."

The site brings in about $500 a day in donations, but the bell ringer believes it was more than that yesterday.

"She was absolutely devastated. She had been here all day and had told us people were being very generous. It's right before Thanksgiving and people were in a giving mood."

To make up for that loss, Kroger is donating $500 to the Salvation Army, and that money goes a long way.

"We can feed a family of four for five weeks. That is 30 coats for children. That is toys under the Christmas tree."

As for the 'Scrooge' who stole the red kettle, they could have asked for help instead of committing a crime.

"So if that individual needed that money for something, it might have been something we could've helped them with and they wouldn't have needed to steal our Kettle."

Kroger is working with Grosse Pointe Woods Police to provide them with surveillance video and that will help with the description of the thief.