Thursday, June 21, 2018
Public safety

Thief took hundreds of watches from Largo thrift store

Times Staff Writer

LARGO — RCS Thrift Store director Linda Sofarelli received a hefty donation of men's watches from Dillard's, so she decided to put them on sale for Father's Day.

She arranged the shiny Michael Kors, DKNY and Fossil goods — luxuries her regular customers can't normally afford — in a display toward the storefront.

Overnight Saturday, they vanished.

"Someone took hundreds of watches, thousands of dollars worth of watches," said Sofarelli, who has worked there 12 years. "I can't believe someone would steal from a charity."

The robber, who apparently entered through a back door, also swiped jewelry, purses and money from the cash register, she said. By Thursday, Largo police had arrested no suspects.

RCS, founded in 1967, provides food, shelter and clothing to needy people in Pinellas County. The thrift store at 2960 East Bay Drive is a major source of funding.

A store alarm sounded Saturday evening and Sofarelli met police officers there. Everything seemed fine, she said, but a second alarm sounded later that night.

"Whoever did this didn't make a mess at all," she said of the robbers. "They broke only a file cabinet."

Sofarelli has since reinforced the back door. The setback won't stop the Father's Day sale, which runs through Monday.

"We still have golf towels, nice shirts, 'I Love Dad' mugs," she said. "There's still good stuff for dad."

Danielle Paquette can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 445-4224.

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