James Edward Thompson | Florida Man January 8

Florida man January 8 - James Edward Thompson

James Edward Thompson Enters God Cafe, Asks For Free Drink Before Fleeing With Tip Jar | January 8

Leesburg: A man was arrested in Leesburg Monday evening after he made a run for it with the tip jar from a local restaurant. The accused thief, 26-year-old James Edward Thompson, was arrested shortly before 5 p.m. Monday, according to records officials.

According to reports, Thompson entered the restaurant moments before and asked the waitress for a free soda. Typically, he added, they’ll give food and drink for free to people in need. However, the waitress told him Thompson was acting strangely, King said, so he wanted to make sure things were okay.

That’s when he heard the clinking of coins in the pickle jar they use for tips, and the man’s footfalls rushing toward the door. King ran to follow, but having recently undergone surgery which kept him mostly to a wheelchair, he couldn’t match his speed.

King said it was just seconds later that the man suddenly appeared again, this time running towards Market Street, right next to the restaurant. King said he managed the grab him then, but couldn’t find a good grip, taking a fall into the curb rather than bringing the man down.

Police were called to the scene and they spotted Thompson running down Market Street and took off in pursuit. They spotted him under the car, and the man bolted when he got to his feet.

Police tased him and he dropped the jar, which shattered on the ground.

James Edward Thompson was charged with petit theft, retail theft and resisting arrest without violence.

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