GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- An Alachua County deputy received praise from the sheriff’s office Sunday evening for his actions during a shoplifting call at a Gainesville-area Publix.

The Alachua County Sheriff’s Office said Deputy Townsend determined that during the shoplifting investigation that a starving man stole $5 worth of food and likely did not have a penny to his name.

An ACSO Facebook states that instead of pulling out handcuffs and arresting the suspect, the deputy pulled out his wallet and paid for hungry man’s items himself.

The man was reportedly in tears and thanked the deputy for his generosity before leaving the store.

The ACSO said the incident was a prime example of service over self.