Noteworthy

Two charged with stealing Salvation Army kettle

Posted December 18, 2008 5:57 p.m. EST
Updated December 18, 2008 7:03 p.m. EST

— It's a crime, investigators say, that spreads anything but holiday cheer – a couple of alleged crooks with a scheme to steal from the Salvation Army kettle.

Police say one rang the bell while the other committed the heist.

It happened Saturday night outside the Super Wal-Mart in Nashville, where Nashville police say Tobias Richardson was collecting holiday donations for the organization.

Richardson, investigators said, called 911, reporting a fight at a nearby apartment complex to draw away an officer sitting in the parking lot.

But police say there was no fight, and while the officer was away, Rashawn Wiggins stole the kettle.

"When they steal from Salvation Army kettles, they're stealing from needy families," Nashville Police Chief Bill Creech said.

Police say that when they returned to the Wal-Mart, Wiggins had run off with the kettle and about $300 inside it.

"It's very disheartening at this time of year that someone would be that dishonest," said shopper Tammy Raynor.

Police eventually arrested Richardson and caught up with Wiggins at a nearby hotel.

Richardson, 26, of Rocky Mount faces a felony count of conspiracy to commit larceny, as well as one count of felony larceny by an employee. He was in the Nash County jail Thursday afternoon under a $7,500 bond.

Wiggins, 23, of New York, also faces a felony count of conspiracy to commit larceny, as well as one count of misdemeanor larceny. He was in the Nash County jail Thursday afternoon under a $10,000 bond.

Police say there could be more arrests.