Published: May 23, 2012 11:26 PM EDT
Updated: May 23, 2012 11:52 PM EDT

CAPE CORAL, Fla. - The victim of a heartless theft is speaking only to WINK News. Cape Coral Police say a woman, in her 60's to 70's, stole thousands of dollars. It's money, and a lot of it, left behind at a Publix. Now, the victim says he needs that cash to pay off his medical bills.

"I had a quadruple bypass." That expensive surgery forced a Cape Coral man to take out his life savings. "I had no money left. I took my IRAs out of the bank, cashed them in, and started paying the hospital," he said.

He doesn't want to show his face, but spoke only to WINK News

The victim says last week he had $10,000 in a bank bag, and was going to deposit it in another account to pay off his bills, but first stopped at this Publix off Del Prado.

The man says while sitting in the parking lot, he thought about leaving his money in the bag, perhaps stashed under a seat, but he didn't feel that was safe.


So he took the money with him into the store. Inside, he sat the bag down, and says he checked his blood pressure, then left to go shopping and forgot the cash. When he remembered, it was too late, and the money was gone.

A picture, from surveillance video shows a woman Cape Coral Police believe is the person who took the bag.

"An older woman, coming by, looking around, grabbing it and sticking it under her purse and it shows her going through - to do her shopping," said the man.

He says all his information was in that bag. "I'm the caretaker for my 87 year old mother. and you know, thats enough," he said."And to have this done to me, by somebody that age, it had ruined my whole perspective of people." The victim says he was one aisle over as the woman, believed to be in her late 60's, walked right by.

"I went through all this hell to have this woman do this to me. you know, its so upsetting," he said.

The man is offering a reward for any tips that lead to an arrest and his money. He says, if the woman had turned in the money, he would have given her a thousand dollars -- on the spot!

If you know the identity of the woman, you are asked to contact the Cape Coral Police, or Crimestoppers.