PEACHTREE CITY, Ga. -- David Thomas has bad knees and sometimes uses a wheelchair.
Such was the case when he went to Walmart's layaway office to pick up his wife's Christmas present. He was counting the money out in his lap, when he got up to pay.
"When they asked me for the money, they pulled up my account, and I started looking for the money, but it was not there," Thomas said.
Niether was the man who had claimed it as his own. But this is about more than a Christmas gift.
"I was really worried that we wouldn't be able to pay the rent on time," Thomas' wife said.
Peachtree City police worked with Walmart for hours reviewing surveillance video. Thankfully, the man made a purchase and police were able to track him.
Police said the man willfully turned the money over.
The police officer handed cash to Thomas, and asked him to count it out. He advised Thomas that it should add up to $541. Thomas thanked the officer and shook his hand after getting his money back.
For the Thomas family, $500 is not just a few more bills in the wallet. This Christmas it was pretty much the only thing in it.
As for the gift, Thomas' wife has no idea what to expect under the tree.