Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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Food bank theft

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BATON ROUGE - A driver for the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank is accused of stealing several thousand dollars worth of food and taking it home.

Thursday, Baton Rouge Police arrested Andre Coates, 49, and charged him with felony theft.  He's accused of ripping off $3,781 worth of food from the food bank over a three week span.

In November, the food bank's CEO was tipped off to suspicious activity involving Coates.

According to an arrest report, an investigation caught Coates loading pallets of food from Costco, Trader Joes and Associated Grocers into his food bank truck and bringing them to his house on Glen Oaks Drive.

Police say Coates got help from two others unloading the food at his house on three separate occasions.

Authorities used GPS to track Coates driving habits and found on each day in question, the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank truck Coates was driving made stops at his home.  Video surveillance caught Coates dumping off the goods, according to the arrest report.

The food bank released a statement saying, "it is truly disappointing and unfortunate that one individual allegedly placed a higher value on personal gain than that of those who are truly in need of food assistance."


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