TAYLORSVILLE — One day after money was stolen from a group of Girl Scouts selling cookies, the perpetrators remained at large but the troop and its leaders are committed to getting back to work.
"Our girls still have cookies to sell," said troop leader Jeanette Williams. "We just feel like it's one of those things where we need to get them back out there so they’re not afraid and that they know there’s so many people out there that want to support the girls and girl scouting."
Police say a man and woman in a teal or green Chevrolet Cavalier approached the girls on Saturday at the Walmart located at 5469 S. Redwood Road. The man exited the vehicle and approached the girls acting as though he was interested in purchasing cookies, but instead reached across the table to grab their cash before fleeing from the scene.
Unified Police Lt. Justin Hoyal said witnesses described the woman as thin with blond hair. The man was described as a white male in his 20’s, about 5-foot-9, weighing approximately 150 pounds with a thin build, wearing a white T-shirt. He also had a sleeve of tattoos covering his left arm, Hoyal said.
"This is a priority," Hoyal said. "We're doing everything we can to solve this."
Michaela Boyette, one of the Girl Scouts who was standing nearby when the incident occurred, said the first thought that she and her friends had was "why?"
"We were angry, kind of mad at him," she said, "but we can't really change that. It's gone."
Boyette said the money her troop raises from the cookie sells goes toward the cost of camp, but is also used for year-round service projects at the Humane Society, animal shelters and an annual activity where the girls make valentines for veterans.
"He's pretty much not stealing from us, just stealing from them," she said.
Williams said the troop makes sure to change out their money frequently during the day to have as little cash on hand as possible. She said the girls have received an outpouring of support from the community since the incident, including many people who have asked how to donate funds.
She said she would be meeting with regional Girl Scout leaders to ask about receiving donations, but for the time being Taylorsville residents could expect to see the girls back in action selling cookies on Saturday, though not at the Walmart.
"Those girls, they work very hard for their money and they use their money for good causes," Williams said. "I can’t imagine why anyone would want to steal from them. It’s not easy for them to stand out there all day selling those cookies."
Anyone with information is asked to contact Unified Police at 801-743-7000.