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Crime & Courts

Police: Bell ringer stole $1,000 in donations from Salvation Army bucket

NAPERVILLE – A Chicago man is accused of stealing more than $1,000 from a Salvation Army donation bucket.

Joe Horton, 52, of 6331 S. Justine in Chicago, faces a charge of misdemeanor theft for stealing $1,030 in donations from the bucket, according to the DuPage County State's Attorney. Horton worked as a bell ringer for the Salvation Army outside a Naperville store.

He also faces a Class 4 felony charge of identity theft for allegedly attempting to use a credit card from a lost wallet he found outside the same store, authorities said in a news release.

“The allegations against Mr. Horton are completely outrageous,” State's Attorney Robert Berlin said. “The very idea that someone would steal donations meant for the less fortunate is sickening, particularly given the fact that we are in the heart of the holiday season.

"I would like to thank members of the Naperville Police Department for their fine work and assistance in this case. I would also like to thank Assistant State’s Attorney Romas Mockaitis for his work as well.”

Horton appeared in bond court Thursday morning where Judge Elizabeth Sexton set his bond at $40,000 with 10 percent to apply.

His next court appearance is scheduled for Dec. 30 in front of Judge George Bakalis.

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