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Salvation Army plans kettle checks after thefts

Published: Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012 12:21 p.m. CDT

DES MOINES (AP) — The Salvation Army will begin unscheduled checks of busy kettle locations in the Des Moines area after the theft of two kettles.

One kettle was stolen Nov. 16 from a Des Moines Hy-Vee store and the other was taken Friday from a West Des Moines Walmart.

In response, the Salvation Army will make random checks to ensure paid bell-ringers and volunteers are watching over kettles.

Salvation Army spokesman Arvid Huisman says someone should have been staffing the Walmart kettle when it was stolen. The other kettle was stolen overnight. Besides money in the kettles, each container and stand cost more than $160 to replace.

The Salvation Army in Des Moines relies on kettle donations for about 40 percent of its holiday revenue.

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