Woman arrested in connection with tip jar money theft from candy store

Thieves stole $50 in cash, owners say


LAUDERDALE-BY-THE-SEA, Fla. – A woman has been arrested in connection with a tip jar money theft that was reported Monday in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea, the Broward Sheriff's Office announced Friday.

The suspect was identified as Brenda Erlin Trochez, 24, of Pompano Beach. 

Surveillance cameras from Jan's Homemade Candies recorded two women walking in the business and looking around the store Monday.

"I asked them if there's something I can help them with," Jan Lendi said.

Lendi told Local 10 News that she noticed the tip jar was gone once the women had already left the store.

"I was watching them and I didn't even realize that the tip jar had already been taken," Lendi said.

Authorities said surveillance video shows Trochez putting the tip jar in her bag.

Lendi said the women got away with $50 in cash.

"It made me angry, and my second reaction was it made me sick to my stomach to know that somebody would just walk here and take something like that," Lendi said. "I mean, Bob and I are very giving people, and if they really needed the money, all they had to do was ask. They didn't need to steal."

Jan and Bob Lendi have been handcrafting chocolate at their business for 18 years.

According to the arrest report, Trochez was identified as one of the thieves by her probation officer, a BSO deputy and by an anonymous Crime Stoppers tip. 

Authorities are still searching for the second woman involved in the theft. 

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