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Hats off to Uncle Sam, a victim's hero

By Helen Huntley, Times staff writer
Published February 21, 2008


This Uncle Sam does your taxes and helps nab purse snatchers. Liberty Tax Service franchisee Steve Doletzky, above, was standing outside his St. Petersburg store at 3739 49th St. N Tuesday afternoon when a young man carrying a purse ran by. Doletzky, 40, dressed in the Uncle Sam regalia that Liberty uses for marketing, threw off his top hat and gave chase. When the man jumped into a car, Doletzky said he memorized the license plate number and flagged down a passing police cruiser. Police spokesman Bill Proffitt said police tracked down a suspect and recovered the purse, but he said the police report, which is incomplete, doesn't mention Doletzky. The purse snatcher and his victim know each other, police said. Doletzky said the woman told him she had just cashed her income tax refund check from a return prepared by rival tax preparer H&R Block. "She promised, 'I'll do it with you guys next year,'" Doletzky said.

[Last modified February 20, 2008, 23:52:56]

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