Cancer research donation jar stolen in Parlier

PARLIER, Calif.

The theft happened Tuesday at the "U Save Market" on Mendocino Avenue. Thanks to surveillance video, police have a good picture of the suspects, now they need the community's help to identify them.

The surveillance video shows a clear shot of the two men police are looking for as they approach the cash register at U Save Market in Parlier and make a purchase. When the cashier turns away, one of the suspects makes his move.

Lt. David Cerda said, "When he exited the store he grabbed the container -- walked out of the store."

Police say both men had been seen in the store on previous occasions, and they're again seen in surveillance video in one of the store aisles just moments before the theft.

Store owner Alice Yamamoto says the jar contained several hundred dollars in donations. "Lots of coins, I think it was already 3/4 full, and it has dollars, I think I even saw a $5 dollar bill. So people do donate when they find out it's for cancer."

Alice had been collecting the money for the past several months, and had planned to donate it to the American Cancer Society. "Yes because I was going to surprise them, with quite a bit, because I was going to donate, the store write a check out also."

The theft was particularly disheartening for cashier Connie Carpio, who's a cancer survivor. "People like that just shouldn't be doing stuff like that, they should just go to work."

Lieutenant David Cerda says thefts like these are unfortunately becoming more common in Parlier in the last couple of years. "A certain percentage is due to the economy, there is a spike in petty theft, property crimes."

For her part, Yamamoto is disappointed but not discouraged. "We'll still do it again, I'll just be more careful."

If you recognize the suspects or have any information about this crime please call the Parlier Police Department.

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