KANSAS CITY, Mo. — An alleged serial drink and dasher was arrested over the weekend. FOX4 told you about Jeff McCart last year, but apparently he’s back at it again. This time in Wyandotte and Johnson counties.
Kansas City, Kansas police say McCart is being looked at in multiple open investigations. In one case for stealing hundreds of dollars from a senior citizen.
The Bar None in KCK is a private members-only club. Outside it says they are the home of hot beer, cold food, and grouchy bartenders. On November 16, bartender Stephanie Snow said a stranger came through their doors. The man said he was a previous member of the club and had lost his membership card. Snow told him she would make him a new one and sort it out.
He started ordering drinks.
“He’d run up probably over $100 buying rounds,” Snow said.
The images from their security cameras are of a face we’ve shown you before. Jeff McCart. A man known throughout the metro by bartenders for running up tabs and running out without paying.
“He was really nice,” long-time Bar None regular, Nicklos Patterson said.
Patterson said he and McCart got to talking. Patterson says McCart offered to show him his new Audi outside in the parking lot.
“He came over next to me and then when he left he wanted to show me something outside. I got up and had my back turned. He lifted up the coin purse stole $360. Patted me on the back, walked out the front door and walked off. A low-life scumbag,” Patterson said.
When Patterson came back to the bar he realized his money was gone. Snow says a security camera from inside the bar shows McCart picking up the money off the bar, looking at the camera, patting Patterson on the back, and walking out the door.
Patterson says after McCart showed him the Audi he drove off. Snow says he did not pay his tab.
“Throw the book at him,” Patterson said.
Patterson is in his 70s and on disability. He says the money McCart stole from him is nearly half of his monthly income for November.
Snow says after the theft her aunt sent her FOX4’s original story on McCart and they realized who they were dealing with.
Pour House in Shawnee is a bar also full of regulars.
“It’s a good mix of people. We have from bikers to musicians. Anybody,” bartender Nick Walters said.
On Saturday, Walters says he got a weird vibe from someone he felt like he’d seen before.
“Couldn’t believe it was him sitting at the bar,” Walters said.
He realized it was McCart, a man widely known through the metro for walking out on the bill. Through Facebook bartenders frequently post when McCart comes into their business, runs up a tab, gives them a bad credit card, and then skips out on the bill.
Walters said McCart gave him red flags and he realized it was the man he’d seen posted time and time again.
“I knew that I’d never met him before, but I knew him from somewhere. After that he told me his name was Jeff and that’s when it all came together,” Walters said.
He called the owner and they decided to keep an eye on him and see what happens.
“He tried to tab out with me. His card declined and that’s when I confronted him,” Walters said. “I think Jeff figured out I knew who he was. I knew what he’d done around Kansas City and all the small businesses and bars that he’d hurt. I told him he was going to stay and pay his tab and he could deal with police when they get here.”
He called Shawnee Police and McCart was arrested for being unable to pay his bill.
Valerie Owings is a licensed professional counselor in Kansas City. She says it can be hard to put a finger on why people continue repeated behaviors.
“There could be a lot of different reasons behind it. There could be a combination of an abuse disorder and a mental health disorder. That’s just really hard to know without doing a clinical assessment with that person,” Owings said.
Those who’ve met McCart say they hope he gets help but he needs to stop.
“I think this is just a thrill for him and that’s terrible,” Walters said.
“Stop. I mean, these poor people this is how they make their living,” Snow said.
In August of 2020, we told you about other instances where McCart was accused of the same and even arrested.
At Headquarters in Lee’s Summit, Co-owner Sonja Griffith said she and her husband opened their establishment to create a gathering place for first responders. She says McCart came in and used one of her customers as a distraction.
Griffith said McCart offered to buy a round of drinks for a first responder and their spouse at her bar. They left money on the counter for a tip, and when Griffith turned around she says McCart not only ran out without paying the tab, but took the money they’d left as a tip.
“To do this to servers and bartenders who are doing everything they can to try and make ends meet is completely disrespectful and disgusting as far as I’m concerned,” Griffith said.
At Tower Tavern in Kansas City, Missouri, bartender Jared Arnold said back in August of 2020, McCart came in and started making grand statements.
Arnold said McCart told another bartender that he worked with the Chiefs, and that Patrick Mahomes and other players would be coming to their patio to drink.
The bartender called Arnold and asked him to come in and help with the anticipated rush. When Arnold got to the bar, they both realized they’d seen this man before.
“I was pretty angry he was in my establishment for one, but I knew we had to crack down on this and get him arrested because he had been terrorizing this town,” Arnold said.
He called police and McCart was arrested. He was charged with a misdemeanor and released.
FOX4 contacted McCart back in 2020 for a response to his arrest and the allegations from several business owners.
“It’s something I regret and am seeking help for,” he said via email. “I did not have the opportunity because the police didn’t give me a chance to pay but could have later. I am an Army vet with deep issues that I unfortunately turn to alcohol to deal with, that are being addressed.”
However, Griffith said she’s heard this from McCart before.
“He initially offered, through our investigator here offered to pay his tab,” Griffith said. “Stated that he had gone to a rehabilitation center and that he was a new man. That same night, I saw he hit two other places in the city.”
FOX4 found at least eight other bars across the metro who believe McCart dashed. They include:
- Headquarters in Lee’s Summit ($60)
- Bricks in Lee’s Summit ($50)
- The Bar in Mission ($220)
- Hurricane Allies in Merriam ($44)
- Danny’s in KCK ($274)
- Twin City Tavern in KCMO ($60)
- Coach Lite Club in KCK ($50)
- Drum Room in KCMO ($400)
McCart is scheduled to be in court Wednesday morning in Leawood Municipal Court. The offense from Pour House is a misdemeanor that could result in up to one year in jail. The Johnson County District Attorney’s office says it hasn’t received information on McCart for possible charges at this time.
KCK police said McCart is a “person of interest in multiple open investigations.”
Both Griffith and Walters encourage any bartender or owner who finds themselves in a similar situation to call police immediately and report any activity so if it is a continuous issue it can be addressed through the justice system.