PINECREST, Fla. (WSVN) — Police have charged a man in connection with the theft of a 94-year-old veteran’s wallet at a supermarket in Pinecrest.

According to Pinecrest police, 56-year-old Derrick Hope targeted 94-year-old John Burt at the Publix located near U.S. 1 and Southwest 132nd Street, Dec. 29. Investigators said the suspect got away with the veteran’s wallet, which contained $65, credit cards and a Red Lobster gift card. "He got me when I wasn’t paying any attention," Burt said.

Police said Hope, who was in jail for allegedly violating parole, purchased more than $6,000 in items at a Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s in Pinecrest with Burt’s credit card. Investigators said he confessed to the theft and is currently facing battery, fraud and multiple theft charges. “Petty theft, battery on a person 65 years of age or older, using identification of somebody over 60, disabled a veteran or government employee and grand theft,” said the judge listing his crimes.  

Burt said that was his I.D. that was taken when Hope bumped into him at a Pinecrest Publix supermarket.

After the general manager of Red Lobster at The Falls saw Burt’s story on 7News, he took it upon himself to replace the victim’s $25 gift card with a $100 gift card.

Burt was relieved to hear that Hope was arrested. "I’m happy that they were able to close that case," he said. "It was bad because it was over $6,000 worth of goods he got there. Every time I go up there, I think about it and it was very tough."

Investigators said Hope has been linked to a number of robberies throughout South Florida. His criminal history includes robbery, resisting officers and battery on a law enforcement officer.

Coral Gables police also said that Hope robbed another elderly woman in a nearby Publix. Surveillance shows him allegedly rummaging through the woman’s purse and stealing credit cards and cash as she picked items out of a freezer.

Hope’s bond has been set at $48,350. "I’m over most of it, thank goodness, but like I said, I’m glad it’s ended," Burt said.

Police said they have been after Hope for months and said he’s been robbing people at various supermarkets in South Florida since at least October.

He has at least 17 counts against him including grand theft.

If you have any information that may help investigators with their case, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $1,000 reward.

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