A man in Arizona was captured on camera stealing coronavirus testing kits from a health clinic. According to the Tucson Police Department, the suspect took 29 unused test kits from the El Rio Health Clinic in Tucson, Arizona on Friday night. They posted on their social media channels an appeal to the public for information regarding the suspect.
The Suspect Took the Kits While Disguised as a Delivery Driver, Cops Said
They wrote that the suspect entered the El Rio Health Center on March 20 just before 8:00 p.m., dressed as a delivery driver. He took 29 unused test kits while the health clinic employees were closing up for the night. In the morning, the staff noticed that the kits were missing and called the Tucson police department.
The Tucson police department described the suspect as “a Hispanic male in his 30’s, approximately 5’9 to 5’11 with a large build. He has a full dark colored beard with some graying.” In addition to the photos from surveillance cameras that have been released to the public, they also captured his vehicle on camera.
They said: “Surveillance video shows the suspect leaving in what appears to be a reddish colored Dodge Charger or similar style vehicle. Anyone with possible information about who this suspect may be is asked to call 88-CRIME. You can remain anonymous.”
The Tucson Police Department Told the Public the Kits Are Essentially Useless
The Tucson police department released some important information about the test kits in a warning to the public. They said the kits are “essentially useless” to the person who stole them because they can only be processed in a private lab with the right tools.
They also said “Do not buy kits from anyone claiming to have Corona Virus Test Kits or COVID-19 Test Kits. It is a scam! There are currently no home test kits for the virus.” If people become aware of someone selling home kits, they said to “Contact law enforcement immediately if you encounter anyone trying to sell these types of kits.”
Their statement also added that the stolen kits have been replaced at the El Rio Health Center so the clinic has not seen an impact on their testing abilities. They continued, saying that “It has however taken 29 testing kits out of the medical field for needed testing in the future.”
The U.S. has been criticized for being behind in coronavirus testing, with still only a limited capability for testing. According to numerous media reports and accounts from Americans, people across the country are unable to get tested. CNN reported that on March 20, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, was asked if the U.S. is able to meet the demand for testing. Dr. Fauci replied, “We are not there yet.”