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Salvation Army red kettle stolen by girl pretending to be bell ringer

The Salvation Army said the girl left collected donations from shoppers before leaving the store with the red kettle and the sign battery used on the kettle stand.

SPOKANE, Wash. — A red kettle used to collect donations for the Salvation Army was stolen on Tuesday by a girl posing as a bell ringer, according to a release from the Salvation Army.

A kettle driver with the Salvation Army dropped off a red kettle to a girl pretending to be a bell ringer, a person who collects donations for the Salvation Army, at a local grocery store on Tuesday afternoon. When the driver returned to the store later that evening, the girl was not there.

The Salvation Army said the girl left collected donations from shoppers before leaving the store with the red kettle and the sign battery used on the kettle stand.

“Unfortunately, though this does happen from time to time around the country, it’s the first time it has happened to us in Spokane in several years.  The sadness of this situation is that it means less for people who desperately need a hand-up from The Salvation Army,” Major Ken Perine of The Salvation Army Spokane said in a statement. “We are already facing a shortage in donations to the Red Kettles this Christmas season, and this situation certainly doesn’t help."

Major Perine said he is hopeful the Salvation Army will be able to overcome the stolen red kettle so they "can help brighten Christmas for individuals who are truly in need".

The Salvation Army Spokane will have its red kettles out until Christmas Eve in Spokane County. Donations can also by mail or can be made virtually here.

For more information, visit the Salvation Army website.

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