Hungry homeless man behind bars after admitting to stealing meats from Ocala grocery store

Gaige Christian Kirk

A homeless Ocala man was jailed Thursday morning after being accused of stealing packets of meat and then fleeing from an Ocala grocery store.

The manager of the Winn-Dixie at 7131 N Hwy. 441 told a Marion County sheriff’s deputy that the man, later identified as 22-year-old Gaige Christian Kirk, had fled the area wearing a white shirt and gray pants. The manager claimed he had taken several packets of meat valued at $161.03 and was last seen running south on U.S. Hwy. 441, a sheriff’s office report states.

The deputy located Kirk a short time later. He matched the description of the suspect and was carrying a red Winn-Dixie grocery bag that contained several packets of meat, the report says.

Kirk admitted to a detective that he had taken the food because he hadn’t eaten in four days. He said he wouldn’t have stolen the items if he had the money to pay for them, the report says.

Kirk was then transported to the Marion County Jail and charged with larceny/petit theft. He is scheduled to be released on Sept. 3 at 9 a.m.