SHELTON, Wash. — The saying goes, “It’s the thought that counts.” But Shelton police weren’t buying it.
According to police, a Mason County man admitted he stole two hanging flower baskets to give to his mother last Sunday for Mother’s Day.
“At first, I was not happy,” said Shelton chiropractor George Blevins.
The baskets, worth about $80 total, had been hanging in front of Blevins' Advanced Chiropractic office. Surveillance cameras caught the thief in the act around 7:30 a.m. Sunday.
The next morning, after Blevins discovered the baskets were gone, he called police and posted the video on Facebook.
“Who steals hanging baskets?” asked Blevins.
By Tuesday, someone who recognized the man in the video identified him to police.
Police told the man he could either be arrested, or he could retrieve the baskets from his mother and deal with his theft citation in court next week. He returned the baskets to police.
“I’d rather go to jail than take them back from my mom,” said Blevins, who organized a fundraiser to buy the suspect’s mother replacement baskets.
He put a box in his lobby with a sign reading “Collections for Flower Bandit’s Mother.”
“We raised over $100 in like four hours,” said Blevins.
On Wednesday, he used the money to buy two new flower baskets and delivered them to the suspect’s mother.
“She was very appreciative,” said Blevins. "It's all come together where my faith in humanity has been restored."
The woman’s son will be in municipal court next week. If convicted of the theft charge, he could face jail time or up to a $1,000 fine.