Bar patron plucks wallet from possible heart attack victim; buys a round

News-DemocratMay 15, 2014 

Police say a patron of the Rock Bottom Bar in Williamson stole $100 from the wallet of a man who was on the floor, suffering a possible heart attack.

Then, after the victim had been taken by ambulance to a hospital, the suspect pulled out one of the two stolen $50 bills and bought a round of drinks, according to police.

Madison County Sheriff's Capt. T. Michael Dixon said the victim told police he was in the bar on the afternoon of May 5 and began experiencing what he thought was a heart attack. The victim told police he was on the floor of the bar, in pain.

The victim recalled someone reaching into his pants pocket and removing his wallet while he was on the floor, but he thought it was his girlfriend. The victim was taken to a hospital, where he was treated and released.

He went back to the bar in the following days to get his wallet, which was now missing two $50 bills. A sheriff's deputy reviewed surveillance footage from the bar. Police said it showed a patron, 32-year-old Bryan J. Kuegler of Livingston, taking the wallet from the victim and then hiding it under his shirt.

The footage showed Kuegler go into a restroom, after the victim had been taken away by ambulance.

"The suspect returned to the bar with a $50 bill and bought a round of drinks," Dixon said. "The suspect can also be seen on the surveillance throwing the victim's wallet on the floor near the bar after exiting the restroom."

Sheriff's deputies located Kuegler at his home on Wednesday and arrested him on a charge of felony theft. Kuegler was being held Thursday afternoon in the Madison County Jail with bail set at $50,000.

Contact reporter Brian Brueggemann at or 618-239-2511.

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