WEST SAYVILLE, N.Y., Sept. 3 (UPI) -- Shortly after their nuptials, a New York couple helped chase down a thief who was allegedly stealing their wedding gifts, witnesses said.
Joanna Williamson, 51, and her new husband, Larry, 53, were alerted that a guest was possibly stealing their gift box at their reception around midnight Saturday, the New York Post reported.
"I called the bride over and asked her if she had asked anyone to hold her gift box," said West Sayville Country Club maitre d' Ann-Marie Botsch. "She had no clue what I was talking about. I said, 'Joanna, there's a gentleman who has your gift box.'"
The suspect, identified as Omar Santiago, 18, who was attending the wedding with the groom's neice, ran toward the bathroom, allegedly stuffing the envelopes filled with cash and checks into his pants, the report said. The Williamsons and several wedding guests followed.
"The bride, groom, and another guest backed him into the bathroom," Botsch said. But then "they saw an empty [money] box in the stall. Somehow, he ran past all of us. I don't know how. He ran into the woods near the tennis courts, and they caught him over there."
"The groom and a good five or six gentlemen chased him down," Botsch said. "When he ran past us, he actually had all the envelopes down his pants. He had a lot of envelopes on him. The police recovered 15."
Santiago was arrested at the scene.
All of the Williamsons' gifts and cash were recovered and the couple headed to Disney World in Florida for their honeymoon, friends said.
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