$1 felony for a cup of soda equals to 5 years maximum in prison and $5000 fine. Incredible?
This is what a 52-year-old man in Florida is facing after being charged for $1 felony right after taking a cup of soda from McDonald’s without paying.
According to a report by Naples News, Mark Abaire is facing a $1 felony charge after he used a courtesy cup and filled it with soda.
The incident happened in McDonald’s East Naples on Thursday where the local manager told the police that Abaire walked out the restaurant without paying for the cup of soda. Abaire was told by an employee that the courtesy cup that he took was only for water, however, he filled it with soda instead and went to sit outside.
The local manager asked him to pay $1 for the cup of soda but Abaire refused and cursed at him.
The authorities arrested the 52-year-old man and charged him with $1 felony, instead of just petty theft. This is because Abaire had a couple of petty theft convictions already in the past and hitting the “three strikes” law in Florida aggravates the crime.
Mike Adams, the owner of the McDonald’s branch in East Naples, has no plans of dropping the charges.
“We are fully cooperating with the authorities on this matter. I have an obligation to the public to adhere closely to local and state laws and rely on the counsel of local law enforcement regarding these types of issues,” he said.
The third-degree felony in Florida has a punishment of 5 years maximum in prison and a $5,000 fine. And it’s because of the $1 soda that he did not want to pay.