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May 08, 2015

Woman bails on restaurant bill for the eighth time

Serial dodger charged with theft after striking at vegan eatery Vedge.

Crime Restaurants
05815_janeenthomas Philadelphia Police Department /for PhillyVoice

Janeen Thomas

Usually when we picture police catching a kleptomaniac, we imagine there's an odd collection of stolen goods like Lysol and drill bits to be returned to the rightful owner.

But for a Philadelphia woman who's been on a spree ditching restaurant bills since February, "theft of service" is her sticky bandit-style signature.

Janeen Thomas was arrested Thursday for neglecting to pay her bill Tuesday night at Locust Street's vegan eatery Vedge, according to NBC 10. Incredibly, it is the eighth time she's pulled this stunt in Philadelphia in the past three months.

Thomas had last struck at Chris' Jazz Cafe at 1421 Sansom St., expanding her repertoire to snag some personal property from Philadelphia Magazine's Victor Fiorillo, who detailed the bizarre incident in a warning letter to Philadelphia bars and restaurants.

Since failing to get away with it the first seven times didn't seem like a good reason to give it a rest, Thomas guzzled down three Long Island iced teas and a full-course meal Tuesday night before telling waitstaff she was stepping outside for a cigarette. She did not return and remained on the loose until Thursday when she was arrested for the eighth time. She remains in custody in lieu of $35,000 bail, of which she must pay 10 percent.

Outstanding charges against Thomas from the previous incidents include receiving stolen property, theft and identity theft.