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Bar Patron Charged With Stealing Wallet Of Man Who Had Heart Attack, Buys Round Of Drinks

A man who suffered a heart attack in an Illinois bar had $100 stolen from his wallet by a thief who used the money to buy a round of drinks for the victim's friend and the rest of the bar, the owner said.

A security camera at the Rock Bottom Bar in Williamson caught Bryan Kuegler, 32, taking Larry Lotter's wallet as the victim lay collapsed on the floor from a alleged heart attack, KTVI reported.

Kuegler used the money to buy drinks for everybody at the bar, including the woman Lotter was with, shortly after Lotter was taken to a hospital by paramedics.

“Rarely have I seen somebody literally steal from what they believe to be a dying man,” Mike Dixon with the Madison County Sheriff's Department told the television station. “It's pretty pathetic.”

Lotter said he was drinking at the bar when he started experiencing what he thought was a heart attack.

"I felt fine, and then all at once, I took a drink of my beer, and I felt a real sharp pain," Lotter told KTVI. "Like someone sticking an ice pick in my chest."

Lotter was on the floor in pain, and friends called 911. Bryan Kuegler also approached the victim, and his fellow patrons thought he was there to help.

But surveillance footage revealed Kuegler removing the wallet from Lotter's pants and hiding it under his shirt.

After paramedics arrived to take the victim to a local hospital, Kuegler entered the restroom. The suspect took two $50 bills from the wallet and returned to the bar to buy a round of drinks. He can also be seen dropping the wallet on the floor, police said.

Lotter's heart attack was a false alarm, doctors said. Kuegler was arrested after police were able to identify him from the surveillance video.

Kuegler has previously been arrested for theft, resisting arrest, battery, possession of narcotics, reports.

In this case, Kuegler is charged with felony theft from a person and could carry up to five years in prison if convicted. He's being held at Madison County jail on a $50,000 bond.


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