Unbelievable: Man Steals $4k Worth of Gas in Just One Month

SUMTER COUNTY, Fla.: A Florida man has been arrested for allegedly using his company’s credit card to fuel his personal vehicle at gas stations across Sumter County, racking up nearly $4,000 in unauthorized charges over the course of a month.

Robert Dearth, 71, was taken into custody on Thursday and now faces charges of felony larceny. According to arrest records from Flagler County, Dearth had been working as a part-time delivery driver for Salescorp USA in Wildwood since August 2022. As part of his duties, he was responsible for refueling the company-owned truck using a gas card provided by the company. However, instead of returning the card after each use, he allegedly kept it for personal use.

Between September 12 and October 17, Dearth reportedly used the company card 74 times at 12 different gas stations in Sumter County. Despite the fact that the company truck only ran on diesel fuel, Dearth opted to fill up his personal 2013 Kia SUV with unleaded gas. The total amount of his unauthorized transactions reached $3,822.88, according to deputies.

The suspicious activity came to light after a representative from Salescorp USA noticed the unusual charges and promptly filed a complaint. During their investigation, authorities obtained surveillance footage from a 7-Eleven gas station in The Villages, which allegedly showed Dearth using the company fuel card to purchase gas for his personal vehicle on multiple occasions. In one instance, he even filled up portable gas cans. It should be noted that the company-owned truck only uses diesel fuel. 

Dearth was interviewed by deputies and subsequently arrested, although the details of his statement have not been released by the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office. After posting a $2,000 bond, he was released from the Sumter County Detention Center.

The relatively high prices of gasoline, mixed with the rising cost of goods, have significantly impacted consumers worldwide, leading to notable shifts in behaviors. As the cost of gas and consumer goods has risen, many individuals are feeling the pinch in their wallets. This financial strain has prompted a range of responses, including individuals who have taken to stealing gas, as was the case in Sumter County. 

This case serves as a reminder that even seemingly trivial actions, such as unauthorized fuel purchases, can have serious consequences.