Florida man accused of reporting fake bomb in Publix bathroom during meat heist: 'Not a stinky bomb'

Dallas Britt was arrested on June 9, 2024 and charged with false report of a bomb, misuse of 911, petit the use of a two-way communication device to facilitate a felony. (Photo: Brevard County Jail)

A Cocoa man has found himself behind bars after he allegedly reported a fake bomb in a Publix bathroom in an apparent ruse to distract deputies as he stole a shopping cart full of meat from the grocery store. 

Dallas Britt, 46, was arrested and charged with the following after the incident that unfolded at the Publix located at 1850 North Courtenay Parkway in Merritt Island on Saturday evening, according to an arrest affidavit from the Brevard County Sheriff's Office: 

  • False bomb report
  • Misuse of 911
  • Petit theft
  • Use of two-way communication device to facilitate a felony

The Brevard County Sheriff's Office received a 911 call from a man, later identified as Britt, who said there was a bomb in the grocery store bathroom, the affidavit said. 

"Somebody put a bomb in the bathroom, um, like the garbage can. It's ticking," Britt told dispatchers, according to the affidavit. 

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Ten law enforcement officials made their way to Publix to investigate the bomb threat. 

"Dispatchers first suggested that the caller contact the public service desk for a clean up on aisle nine, but soon realized that the caller meant a ticking bomb, not a stinky bomb," Sheriff Wayne Ivey said. 

When deputies arrived, Britt was reportedly making his way out of the store with a shopping cart full of meat products. The items weren't bagged, and deputies believed they were being stolen, according to the affidavit. They asked to see Britt's receipt and said he was on his way to his car to get his wallet. 

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Deputies allowed Britt to continue on because of the bomb threat – but they caught up with him later during a traffic stop, the affidavit said. 

During the traffic stop, deputies called the phone number used to call in the bomb threat – and a flip phone in Britt's car started ringing, according to officials. He eventually admitted to using the phone while inside of Publix and even told deputies that he did try to steal the meat products from Publix, but he denied making the 911 call, the affidavit said. 

Deputies reviewed surveillance footage from Publix which shows Britt allegedly stealing the cart-full of meat, making a phone call at the same time the 911 call was made, and leaving the store without paying for the products. 

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The shopping cart was filled with nearly $375 worth of groceries, the affidavit said. 

Britt has three prior convictions for theft, dating back to 2018, deputies said. 

Britt remains in custody in Brevard County on $25,000 bond, arrest records show. 


"Britt is now sitting in our less than accommodating jail where bombs get dropped every day in the open communal bathroom," Sheriff Ivey added.