Deputies: Man stole cash donation can from veterans' group

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On any given day you can find volunteers with Veterans' Outreach asking for donations outside the Publix on Fruitville Road. 

"It is the bread and butter. Three-fourths of what we get," said Bob Graham. 

Instead of donating, deputies with the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office said 34-year-old Bryon Wyatt snatched the can of cash. 

"I can't describe. I can't put my mind in that man's mindset. How could he take away from veterans? Nobody should be that unknowingly about what veterans have done for our country. Apparently, he is," said Graham. 

The volunteer tried to stop Wyatt and ran after him, but he slipped and fell. 

"He skinned up his knees. He was supposed to go back that next day and he couldn't," said Graham. 

Inside the can was $240 cash. The money was supposed to help local veterans pay for their utilities, car repairs, and provide immediate financial relief. 

"It's just a constant struggle to get that money that we need to pay those bills," said Graham. 

As the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office searched for Wyatt, deputies said they felt sick to their stomachs. 

"It really just bothered us from a human standpoint," said Sheriff Tom Knight. 

Sheriff Tom Knight decided to open up his office's unclaimed cash funds and donated $500 to  Veterans' Outreach. 

"We wanted to do just a little act of kindness with the hopes that other people out there will recognize it too and maybe help his cause out," Knight said. 

Karma caught up with Wyatt. Deputies in Manatee County arrested him after he allegedly ran from a traffic stop where they said he was driving impaired. 

Deputies say Wyatt had a mixture of heroin and fentanyl in his possession. 

He was charged with fleeing to elude, possession of a controlled substance, and DUI. 

Wyatt is now behind bars and waiting to be brought back to Sarasota County to face a charge of petit theft. 

"I'm very pleased we no longer have to worry about him. I hope the key gets thrown away," said Graham.  

For more information on Veteran's Outreach call (941)-755-1305 or visit