A Main Line woman is accused of being a grinch who stole holiday tips left for trash collectors in Tredyffrin and Radnor.
Tredyffrin Police say they were called by a resident on Grouse Lane in Wayne at 11 a.m. on Christmas Eve who reported that a woman was taking tips left with trash cans for trash collectors that morning.
Police say the responding officers were able to find the car, described a blue Nissan with a handicapped parking permit hanging from the rearview mirror, on Croton Road. Police say they clocked the car going 36 miles per hour in a 25 mile hour zone and pulled the driver over.
While one officer started processing the driver's license for the speeding stop, two others began interviewing her about the reported tip thefts. According to charging documents filed with the Devon District Court, Kristen Bazik-Hempcher of Rosemont "was deceptive in her answers at first but soon began to cooperate." According to an Affidavit of Probable Cause "Bazik at first admitted (to the officers) to taking a tin of cookies that were left in the curb area of a residence trash can but denied taking anything else. She freely allowed a search of her vehicle to include the trunk area."
Police say they found a "Christmas-style" gift bag that contained several opened envelopes addressed to the "Trash Guys" and the "Sanitation Department." According to court documents police say Bazik admitted to taking "about three of them" and she also turned over $30 she told police were in those envelopes.
Police say they found several more envelope with similar addresses in the trunk of the car.
During the traffic stop and search of the car, Tredyffrin Police say they were told about similar crimes that had been reported in Radnor. Radnor police joined the search of the car which had been stopped near Old Eagle School and Deepdale Roads in Devon.
During the search Tredyffrin Police say they and the Radnor officer found another $240 in the woman's purse which was "believed to have been taken from the envelopes."
Police say Bazik followed police to the Tredyffrin Police station where she "provided a written statement confessing to the crimes."
Bazik faces misdemeanor theft and receiving stolen property charges when she comes before a judge later this month.
CBSPhilly.Com reports that when CBS3 Eyewitness News Reporter Todd Quinones contacted Bazik at her Rosemont home Thursday she had no comment on the story. According to the report, her husband told Quinones that when people leave their trash on the curb people have a right to go through it.