Busted tip jar thief reportedly hit cafe numerous times 

Have cops detained a serial tip jar thief?

A suspect arrested on suspicion of stealing a soda and tips from a Divisadero Street cafe Sunday had reportedly struck the establishment for a fifth time in two months, according to a local blogger who interviewed a store employee.

Odis Jack Gillard, 63, a South of Market resident, was charged with burglary and shoplifting, police spokesman Officer Albie Esparza said Wednesday.

Andrew Dudley of Haighteration reported Wednesday that the man had been banned from Cafe Divis at 359 Divisadero St. The employee also told the blogger the suspect had been stealing from establishments in the area for 15 years.

The suspect was detained at Scott and Haight streets after employees directed them to him, police said.

Police say thefts from tip jars are a common problem citywide. The topic was addressed at a recent police Compstat meeting, where a police captain reported tip jar theft issues on Polk Street.

Thieves strike restaurants, coffee shops and take-out joints, Esparza said.

"The problem is a lot of the times people don't report it," he said.


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