Brazen theft of charity box at Kelowna fast-food restaurant

Click to play video: 'Donation box theft in Kelowna, B.C.'
Donation box theft in Kelowna, B.C.
A donation box inside a Kelowna fast-food restaurant was stolen on Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021. A security camera captured the brazen incident – Aug 25, 2021

A Kelowna A&W was the site of a brazen theft earlier this week and a charitable organization will suffer as a result.

At around 6:30 p.m., on Aug. 21, security cameras caught a man walk up to the counter of the Rutland fast food restaurant, interact with staff at the restaurant in Kelowna.

It looks like a pretty unremarkable exchange until the teller turned their back and the man grabbed the MS donation box and ripped it from where it was tethered at the counter. A&W has a yearly fundraiser called Burgers to Beat MS, which supports the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada.

Nobody was hurt, but some say it highlighted a safety concern and crime has become more common in the neighbourhood. He declined a request for an interview. RCMP have yet to return a request to confirm this event.

Story continues below advertisement

Kelowna did, however, recently rise in the national crime ranking released by Statistics Canada.

Click to play video: 'Kelowna 3rd on national crime severity index: Statistics Canada'
Kelowna 3rd on national crime severity index: Statistics Canada

It ranked third behind Lethbridge, at No. 1, and Winnipeg, at No. 2. Annually released, the crime severity index measures the severity of police-reported violations, including traffic offences, with serious crimes given more weight.

Breaking news from Canada and around the world sent to your email, as it happens.

According to Statistics Canada, the national average for 2020 was 73.44.

Kelowna’s rating, which includes Peachland, West Kelowna and Lake Country, was 111.9. Winnipeg was at 116.3 while Lethbridge was at 138.7.

Kelowna was ranked ninth in violent crime but second in non-violent crime, and it’s the non-violent crimes that pushed the city’s ranking up. Those include what RCMP said the files include theft from motor vehicles, shoplifting, theft under $5,000 (which is often theft from yards or open garages), mischief, and disturbing the peace.


Sponsored content