Man arrested after allegedly entering Publix by breaking glass door, stealing lottery tickets, and making himself a sandwich


GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Kendrick Keir Sparks, 34, was arrested early this morning after allegedly breaking a glass door at the Main Street Publix with a brick, then stealing lottery tickets and making himself a sandwich while inside the store.

A Gainesville Police Department officer responded to the store at 3:00 a.m. and reportedly found Sparks inside, with lottery tickets in his pocket and Band-Aids on his hands. The officer determined that Sparks had broken the glass in one of the entrance doors and then, while inside the store, he allegedly stole turkey and some chips and made himself a sandwich. He also allegedly took a package of Band-Aids to bandage his hands where they had been cut by glass.

A Publix manager told the officer that the damage to the glass doors was estimated at about $1,000. The lottery tickets were valued at $790; the turkey, chips, and bread were valued at about $10; and the Band-Aids were valued at $2.29.

Post Miranda, Sparks reportedly admitted using a brick to break the glass door and said that he is trying to get back home to Las Vegas with the money from the lottery tickets. He also reportedly said he was hungry while he was in the store, so he made a sandwich and ate some chips. He said he used the Band-Aids to bandage the cuts on his hands.

Sparks’ address is listed as the North Florida Evaluation and Treatment Center, a maximum-security mental health facility in Gainesville.

Sparks was charged with unarmed burglary. He has no local criminal history; bail information is unavailable on weekends.

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. 

  • Apparently the maximum security switch wasn’t on at his mental health family that day.

  • Since he only wanted to get home to Las Vegas, I wonder if the overpaid mayor and commissioners will be willing to compensate the store for the damages and buy him a ticket back to Vegas – one way of course.

    Some in the community wonder why people aren’t jumping at the opportunity to open businesses on the east side of town…time to stop.
    Just wait until Shands builds a facility, how long before/how many times will it be broken into to satisfy someone’s “fix”?

    Gullible people aren’t helping.

    • Since you’re a good person, maybe you should offer to buy him a one way ticket back home!

      • OG…I can’t afford it. The tax burden & utility rates I’m forced to pay by those you elected prevent me from paying the full fare. I’ll chip in with you & your buddies for a bus ticket though.
        Think you can get them to chip in like most of the rest of us tried to talk them out of raising GRU rates?

        • As much as you are on here commenting I was under the impression that you were getting paid to make comments 😢

          • OG TALK- think it’s a pretty safe bet that Mr Sparks already gets enough free money from us taxpayers. He could quit smoking it up & budget it better, then get his own bus ticket to Vegas.

          • OG…Nope, just enjoying the unfiltered, uncensored news that other mediums choose to ignore.

            I will admit, many people, yourself included, appear to enjoy it as well. It’s a good thing the Alachua Chronicle isn’t owned by MSN, MSNBC & many of the others who cater to your political views.

            Just think of the positive effect it’s having, some of us have the opportunity to warn others & some have the opportunity to just condone such behaviors. Either way, we’re able to get that warm fuzzy feeling, the same feeling local leadership gets when they stick it to the residents of Alachua County & Gainesville.

            Bright side, at least it’s occupying enough of my time I’m not breaking into a Publix or assaulting someone at Grace Marketplace.

      • I’m ok with them using my tax dollars to send every felon & vagrant on the hound outta town to where they came from with the acknowledgment that they will never come back or face 3 years in jail if they violate the agreement. No exceptions. They can fill out the form at GPD on 6th street and they can issue the bus ticket right there or at the jail on 39th.

  • WTF this is why Publix cannot expand east, duh District 1. They’ll probably close that store, soon, just watch. Only dollar store and Walmart food from now on.

    • Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t that the only store in Gainesville that doesn’t have “self-checkout?”
      I have heard it has the highest theft rate in Alachua County.

      • The only Publix self-checkout I’ve seen was at the one by the Holiday Inn near campus. That one also has a high number of vagrants.

    • The county government should pay Publix to open a store next to the Sheriffs office with a shared parking lot. If Clovie and 200 deputies hanging around 27/7 cannot provide security then we will know what the real problem is.

      • Many Eastsiders can’t afford Publix prices, even with government subsidies. Publix tried that in St. Pete’s version of Eastside and lost money. So did the grocers who followed. Don’t forget there was a Winn-Dixie not from ASO, but they couldn’t make it, even with an armed guard.

  • They should start making these criminals start working labor jobs to work off the damage they cause. Make them pay$$$

    • Yes! And they can learn a skill.—at least they will be contributing back to the community in a positive way and will get some mentoring while in the program. they need to be earning something
      And paying back society too for the expenses they caused.

    • Unfortunately, that is called indentured servitude and is totally illegal. It was a favorite during Jim Crow, by the Democrats. We also had chain gangs working. Remember “Chain Gain Charlie” (Crist)? He made governor (R) off that moniker, meaning he was for law and order.

      • They can sit in jail or get out & repay society and have some money saved so they get get a job and apartment went they get out.

        • Yes. Rehabilitation and learn a skill and pay for your room and board and pay back society and your victims is NOT indentured servitude…it’s personal responsibility for your actions…

  • Am I wrong to think it took too long for police to respond? He breaks a window, has time to find the band aids, then bandages his hands. He moseys on over to the customer service counter to steal a few hundred dollars dollars worth of lottery tickets. He then wanders over to the deli, has time to find the turkey and bread, make himself a sandwich, get a bag of chips and settle in for his snack. How long does all that take? 10, 15, 20 minutes?

  • He could have broke into your home at 3a.m. while you were sleeping instead of a Publix to eat stuff from your refrigerator and steal stuff….let that sink in. Bet you would be in fear for your life…they need to put him in a sanitarium and give him a lobotomy if they are going to release him back in the community. Maybe these repeat felons third strike and you get the lobotomy…that will give the criminal something to ponder….

  • Damages will be much higher than that. The whole deli will have to be sanitized and restocked.

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