LAKE WORTH, Fla. - The owner of a South Florida Snap On Tools Franchise says his employee and best friend stole nearly $75,000 worth of tools from him.
"I loved the kid. He was like my brother. I wasn't stabbed in the back, I was stabbed in the heart," Kenneth Gheorge said.
Investigators say Shawn Gallo has been stealing the tools for months and pawning them for cash.
"He would basically order tools and tell me they are for a customer. I would call the order in because I believed him. But he would go to the Pawn Shop and sell them," Gheorge said.
Police reports show that Gallo would sell the tools to nearly a dozen pawn shops.
Gheorge says he didn't notice because he trusted Gallo.
"I'm heartbroken. I'm trying not to cry," Gheorge said.
Gheorge says he helped Gallo with financial issues before -- giving him money for a down payment on his house and assisting him to get out of legal trouble.
"At the end of the three years working for me, I was going to give him the $250,000 truck I bought for him. This would have all been his," Gheorge said.
Gheorge says excellent work by the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office and a detective with Palm Beach Gardens Police led to the arrest.
Gallo faces nearly thirty charges including dealing stolen property and grand theft.