Grinch sentenced for stealing from those in need at Christmas - 19 Action News|Cleveland, OH|News, Weather, Sports

Grinch sentenced for stealing from those in need at Christmas

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Jeffrey Gregg in court Jeffrey Gregg in court
PAINESVILLE, OH (WOIO) -

A man was sentenced Thursday for pretending to be a Salvation Army red kettle ringer, and then making off with what he collected.

"Mentally I'm in a much better place, but clearly I wasn't thinking right at the time," stated Jeffrey Gregg.

Jeffrey Gregg was sentenced to five days in jail and restitution. He must also complete 400 hours of community service.

"You can plant, you can weed, and harvest you can distribute, help distribute the food to the needy," said Judge Cicconetti.

In a creative twist in the sentence, Gregg must wear a Santa hat while serving hours at a food bank in Lake County.

On December 21, Gregg came into the Giant Eagle store on Mentor Avenue in Painesville Township, and posed as a Salvation Army bell ringer. Gregg convinced the worker that he was their relief, then after taking over the Salvation Army donation pot stand and posing as the bell ringer, he proceeded to steal the donations by grabbing the pot of money and exiting the store.

Luckily, a surveillance camera caught Gregg in the act, and detectives tracked him down shortly after the new year. After questioning, Gregg fessed up.

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