Homeless man arrested for stealing money from waitress’s purse

Staff report

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Richard Soren Vey, 55, was arrested last night at the Oaks Mall for allegedly taking $400 from the purse of a waitress at Buffalo Wild Wings.

A Gainesville Police Department Officer made contact with Vey and the victim when the victim flagged him down in the parking lot of the Oaks Mall and asked for assistance. As the officer approached, he reportedly heard Vey arguing with the victim, claiming he did not steal anything. As the officer separated the two, Vey reportedly became angry and started shouting at the victim, so the officer placed Vey in handcuffs. In a search incident to arrest, the officer reportedly found $395 in cash in his pocket.

The victim said that while she was at work at Buffalo Wild Wings, she set her purse, which contained $400 in cash, down on a table. She said she saw Vey walk over to the table, grab her purse, walk into a bathroom, then walk out. The victim said she retrieved her purse from a trash can in the bathroom and saw that the cash was missing. She and another employee followed Vey out of the restaurant and across the parking lot of the mall.

The officer reported that Vey seemed intoxicated. He reviewed the security footage from the restaurant’s surveillance cameras and saw Vey walking behind the bar toward the table where the purse had been placed. About two minutes later, Vey is seen walking quickly toward the store exit.

The officer interviewed an employee of the restaurant, who said the manager had spoken with Vey multiple times because he had been causing a disturbance. He said Vey got up, walked toward the gaming console next to the purse, then went into the bathroom. The employee did not report seeing Vey with the purse but said that Vey had paid his bill ($3.23) with a $5 bill before leaving.

Vey reportedly told an officer that he was homeless, had no job, and was down on his luck.

Vey was arrested last August for shoplifting from the Love’s in Hawthorne, but the charges were dropped. He has five misdemeanor convictions; Judge Susan Miller-Jones set bail at $2,000.

Articles about arrests are based on reports from law enforcement agencies. The charges listed are taken from the arrest report and/or court records and are only accusations. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. 

  • Judge Susan Miller Jones to the rescue. How she remains as a judge baffles me.

    • hi american white nationalist clown town , why do you think meatball ron and your tangerine snowflake hero donald wear so much make up ?

  • Same old excuse, I’m homeless, I dont have a job, I’m down on my luck. All are an excuse to commit crime. To steal someone’s property (especially earned property) is a poor excuse for a human being. Why not stand at an interstate exit and beg for money like the others do.

  • Gainesville should have a reputation as a relatively safe place to do business. Thanks to the three departed amigos on the commission and Saco, that is not the case. I can almost guarantee that for every vagrant you see on the street, there is a position at City Hall or GRU that can be eliminated (especially in GRU management). That’s what needs to happen to truly get finances in order. That’s why they keep City Hall locked up – everybody would see all they do is sit around 90 percent of the time, floor after floor, all day long.

  • All derelict remediation centers like GRACE, Meridian, Shands psych rehab, etc should be forced to relocate to another county far away from here. They will NEVER get better in a college town, by simply using logic of not being able to compete with 50,000 students for unskilled jobs and housing.
    We need the state to intervene and relocate them, since they all get gov’t subsidies. The caseloads will find jobs, addiction relief and housing much better, far from here.

  • Relocate all homeless/addiction rehab facilities to another county far away. They won’t get better in a college town. But maybe that’s why they’re up here? 🧐🤔🤡👹🍦🍦🍦

  • Spread the wealth. Put them all in every commissioner’s yard, (and Ward’s). Then put a fence around the property to keep them the rest of us safe. We don’t build fences to keep people out, we build them to keep people safe.
    Keep the people who actually care about Gainesville safe from these types…commissioners included.

  • Instead of those ankle monitors they use they should switch to shock collars for the criminal homeless and the business owners should be given remote controls to activate if they trespass their businesses.

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