Category: True Crime Tuesday

True Crime Tuesday: Think Different Edition

Passport To Peril - Robert B. Parker - Pulp Cover - Car Chasing Woman

Variety is what keeps me coming back to the true crime well. At this point I know all too well the breadth and depth of criminal behaviour, but the unexpected twists keep it interesting.

For example: You’re familiar with the increasingly-hard-to-manage tactic of chaining an ATM to a truck and ripping it from the wall for the cash inside? Or the more old fashion “brick through the window and loot” technique?

As reports, some St. Louis thieves have their own approach:

St. Louis Metropolitan Police rushed to a National Rent-to-Own store in the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis City after a smash-and-grab burglary early Friday morning.

So far SSDD, right? But:

Police said a witness called 911 after a gray or silver Dodge Ram pickup truck back[ed] into the rear of the store. That was at 4:11 a.m. Friday. Investigators said several flat-screen televisions were taken. The suspects may have left some of their loot behind. A flat-screen with “National Rent-to-Own” written on the back was lying near the scene on Sarah Avenue and McPherson Avenue.

To be clear, they did not bump into the store gently then somehow make off with the goods.

Rent to own damaged

So what evidence do we have to go on after this wall busting caper?

Police are looking for a gray or silver Dodge Ram pickup truck with heavy rear-end damage.

As I’m assuming the cops would first check for reports of missing vehicles, I’m going to suggest that the criminals start their next at-most-several-thousand-dollar crime spree by commandeering a vehicle, if only to save on repair costs.

Ten Detective Aces - Feburary 1943 - Pulp Cover - Taxi Car Fight

Fine – but what could possibly make a random act of violence anything new?

Well, here’s what the Phoenix News Times has to say:

The two started arguing, and Houston started to come down the stairs. The man who was walking with his dog retreated to his apartment, but Houston started shooting at the victim just as he reached his door, police say.

Now, this sounds like every “argument gets heated” shooting story you may have heard – but how did it begin?

A 41-year-old man was walking his dog at the apartment complex, near 32nd Street and Thomas Road, around 10 p.m. Tuesday when Houston vomited on the dog from a second-story balcony, police say.

From the second story balcony! Houston (who clearly had a problem) must have practiced his skills regularly. More so, at least, than his shooting:

As the victim was shot, he fell into his apartment, and Houston kept firing, striking two children — a 14-year-old girl and a 9-year-old boy.

The children were hospitalized, but their injuries aren’t life-threatening, and they have since been released.

The 41-year-old man underwent surgery and was in critical condition Wednesday. His condition has since been upgraded to stable.

Now, clearly this wouldn’t be nearly as funny if all three hadn’t survived, but imagine the “What I Did This Summer” essay that nine-year-old will write when he returns to school: “This guy vomited on my dog, then the real trouble started…”
The Hound of the Baskervilles -  Oldcastle Books Pulp Cover

True Crime Tuesday: More Than They Could Chew Edition

You'll Get Yours - Pulp Cover
Don’t worry, there’s no cannibalism in this edition of TCT – but there’s definitely a pair of knife-wielding miscreants.

First up, via Rich the Time Traveller and Sports Illustrated, we have the tale of referee Otavio da Silva.

The Public Safety Department of the state of Maranhao says in a statement that it all started when referee Otavio da Silva expelled player Josenir Abreu from a game last weekend.

Passions often run high when sports are involved, but you can almost tell what event you’re dealing with based solely on the description of how the debate regarding the penalty plays out.

It started as a verbal argument, so maybe it’s baseball – except:

The two got into a fist fight

– so maybe it’s hockey –

Silva took out a knife and stabbed Abreu, who died on his way to the hospital.

– OK, so it’s soccer –

Abreu’s friends and relatives immediately “rushed into the field, stoned the referee to death and quartered his body.”

– oops, never mind: NOW it’s soccer.

Popular Sports, Fall 1943 - because it's impossible to find soccer on a pulp cover
Popular Sports, Fall 1943: Because it's impossible to find soccer on a pulp cover

Silva isn’t the only one who should have been kept from the cutlery, however. The Geelong Advertiser reports:

Police allege the [suspect, aged 64,] from Queensland had bought a knife from the shopping centre’s Kmart store and approached a 22-year-old female as she prepared to drive out of the carpark.

He’s probably just trying to show off his new purchase? Right?


Geelong Senior-Constable Paul Mitchell said the victim wound down her window and the man held the knife to her throat, demanding she give him the vehicle.

Well – to be fair, he did sort of need the ride. Did I mention that he accomplished all of this while using a walker?

After putting his walker in the car, the man drove a short distance before getting out to load in other bags.

See? He just needed help with his discount throw pillows and bulk Efferdent.

With his stunned victim quickly calling 000, police were able to arrest the man before his planned escape to South Australia.

Argosy - Trouble Wagon by Chase - car chase pulp cover

True Crime Tuesday: Assumptions Edition

Whiz Comics May 1940

Today’s TCT is all about what happens when you make assumptions regarding your life of crime.

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First up we have Miguel Sanchez, 59, who, according to the Daily Mail, was arrested in May:

After he was fingerprinted, police discovered his identity and that he had a $2 million warrant in California.

His crime?

[S]tabbing someone multiple times after an argument in 2000, then stabbing a second person before running away.

That puts him on the lam for thirteen years. What mind-blowing caper was this mastermind undertaking when the cops finally put an end to his reign of terror?

‘Kentucky Fried Chicken called and said he was peeing on the wall,’ said Colorado Springs police Lt. Dan Lofgren.

Black Mask - Giant Chicken Pulp Cover

However, as points out, foolish decisions aren’t limited to professional criminals – as is the case with Sheriff’s Deputy Matthew Andrews.

Andrews, as you may recall, was recently caught up in the prison escape of one Felix Trujillo:

In a statement two days after the escape, Denver Sheriff’s Deputy Andrews’ lawyer claimed the deputy’s actions “were compelled by threats to his life or his family’s life.”

Trujillo, though a criminal, apparently did not particularly enjoy being accused of making threats.

“He’s pretty dumb,” [said Trujillo]

The comments came in an exclusive interview with CBS4, Trujillo’s first public comments since he escaped from the Denver Detention Center April 7 and gave himself up three days later following a massive law enforcement manhunt.

The proof?

The 24-year-old inmate said Andrews would complain about his financial condition and inquire about Trujillo’s finances. Trujillo said the deputy had seen his Facebook page showing him posing with expensive cars and motorcycles and was under the impression the inmate was wealthy.


Shortly after, Trujillo said Andrews met with some associates of Trujillo’s along Federal Blvd, who gave the deputy a cellphone and charger which Trujillo says Andrews smuggled into the jail and gave the inmate.

Fine, but greed isn’t equal to stupidity – is it?


Trujillo says the deputy agreed to engineer the escape in exchange for $500,000.

“He wanted 250 up front and 250 at the end,” said Trujillo, who said the deputy never got a dime for the escape.

According to Trujillo, Andrews wanted to contact Trujillo’s brother to handle logistics for the escape and the anticipated money exchange and other details. Trujillo said he gave the deputy a cellphone number purportedly belonging to his brother, but he said it was actually the number to the phone that had been smuggled into Trujillo’s cell.

Day after day, Trujillo says Deputy Andrews would text the phone thinking he was arranging the escape with Trujillo’s brother, when he was actually communicating with the inmate himself.

“Yeah, he’s pretty dumb,” said Trujillo.

True Crime Cases Magazine July 1949 - Prison Pulp Magazine Cover

True Crime Tuesday: Simple Solutions Edition

Bimbos of the Death Sun, pulp cover with computer
Today’s TCT is all about simple solutions to sticky criminal problems. For example, Jonathan G. Parker, 19, had a simple solution: Log out.

Unfortunately for him, as reports, he didn’t:

Jonathan G. Parker, 19, of Fort Loudoun, Pa., was arraigned Tuesday one count of felony daytime burglary.

According to court records, Deputy P.D. Ware of the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Department responded on Aug. 28 to the victim’s home after she reported the burglary.

She told police that someone had broken into her home through a bedroom window.

There were open cabinets in her garage, and other signs of a burglar.

At this point we’re all familiar with social media’s role in crime fighting, and I’ve provided something of a hint off the top – so how was he caught? Bragging on Facebook? Tweeting pictures from the scene?

Nope: Old fashioned stupidity.

The popular online social networking site Facebook helped lead to [Parker]’s arrest after he stopped check his account on the victim’s computer, but forgot to log out before leaving the home with two diamond rings.

Go, Man, Go! Hot Rod Pulp Cover

As the Huff Po tells it, Brenda and Sheila’s solution was a little less obvious.

54-year-old Brenda Byrd, and 48-year-old Sheila Joiner were booked with contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile and allowing an unlicensed driver to operate a motor vehicle.

Surely this is all just a misunderstanding revolving around a loving grandmother teaching her grandson to drive, right? Not quite:

A Kenner police news release says the boy’s grandmother and another woman in the vehicle were arrested early Wednesday when the car was pulled over on a city street. Police say they told officers that they had the [10-year-old] boy drive because they were intoxicated.

If that was their problem, what possibly could have been their solution? It’s not perfect, but they could have considered letting the other kid drive:

The young driver and a 15-year-old passenger were later released to family members.

Popular Science Cover, car driving off building

True Crime Tuesday: Pick Your Battles Edition

Live Till You Die
Today’s True Crime Tuesday is about realizing that you often need to simply keep calm and carry on.

It’s a lesson – as reports – that Karen Harrelson and Gregory Stambaugh did not learn:

As Karen Elaine Harrelson, 48, and Gregory L. Stambaugh, 57, were watching “American Idol” in the basement of Stambaugh’s West Manchester Township home Wednesday, May 15, the two got into an drunken argument over which contestant – Candice Glover or Kree Harrison – should win the season’s title.

Which is hardly surprising, as…

Both Harrelson and Stambaugh told police they been drinking, with Stambaugh adding that Harrelson started drinking beer and tequila at 5 a.m. and that he joined in at noon by drinking beer and a pint of scotch, the report says.

So, how do you decide who should win? Engage in a well reasoned discourse and examination of the individual contestant’s strengths and weaknesses? Rock Paper Scissors? Watch the show?

In this case, they chose knife fight.

So one of them went to the kitchen, got a knife and stabbed the other. Whoever was stabbed first then took hold of the knife and stabbed the other, according to West Manchester Township Police.

Who stabbed first? Unsurprisingly, the pair argue the point.

Black Mask Cover

Ever heard the saying that “no good deed goes unpunished”? 71-year-old William Moody apparently holds the axiom close to his heart, as, according to

A North Strabane Township man was arrested Friday after police said he got mad that a good Samaritan parked her car in his driveway while helping the victim of a car crash.

The nice thing about starting a fight beside a car crash, however, is that the police are already close at hand to deal with things.

When officers arrived, they said Moody fought with them before being arrested.

How does a man of that age go into battle against the theoretically-well-prepared forces of justice? Guile, apparently.

Moody is also accused of faking a heart attack and hitting a paramedic when the cuffs were removed.

His wits, however, were not his only defense – he also had his teeth, though perhaps not in the way that you might think.

Once at the police station, officers said he again began to fight with law enforcement and threw his false teeth and a watch at them.

Weird Vampire Tales

True Crime Tuesday: Turnabout is Fair Play Edition

True Adventures Pulp Cover
Today’s True Crime Tuesday is all about squeezing juice into life’s eyes when it hands us lemons – or, at least, trying to.

For example, life was getting a bit rough on Aftab Aslam, as CBS News reports:

[John’s Creek city spokesman Doug] Nurse says Aslam left home because he didn’t want to tell his parents he was failing an English class at Georgia Gwinnett College.

Did he strike out into the world, looking to make his fame and fortune on the path less traveled? Not exactly:

Nurse says Aslam bought a cellphone and texted his parents a story about being kidnapped April 27.

– but guess what’s harder than a community college English class? Camping out to fake your own kidnapping.

Nurse says Aslam camped for about a week in an undeveloped area in Forsyth County, but the weather turned cold and rainy and he went home.

Paul Rader Teacher's Pet

Some folks, on the other hand, will fight even when others might suggest they should simply let things go.

Such is the case of Kaleb Young, reports:

[I]n September, officers raided Young’s home, and they came in force. “They had eighteen SWAT-level officers wearing battle dress uniforms, many of them carrying assault rifles,” [defense attorney Rob] Corry said. “They ripped Kaleb out of his house with guns drawn — this for a guy who had no criminal record — and did the same thing to his mother.”

The cops subsequently found a warehouse space containing what Corry described as “a small grow — fifty plants, some of them dying, cared for by an amateur grower with piles of documentation.”

An open and shut case in some locations, perhaps, but not so in Colorado:

Kaleb Young, a marijuana caretaker [was] acquitted of three felonies. But while the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office gave back some of the items seized during a raid the previous year, 42 marijuana plants weren’t returned — because they had died.

Of course they had – why should the officers in question have been exercising their green thumbs? Well:

Corry offers up the following analogy: “Let’s say the government seized my dog, and they say it’s vicious. But if it’s later determined that the dog wasn’t vicious and should be returned, they couldn’t say later that they’d denied it food and water or put it down. They’d need to keep it alive until either the wrongdoing was proven or it wasn’t — and that’s the case here. The jury acquitted my client of all charges. So they needed to return the property they’d taken from him in as good or better condition than it was in when they took it.”

So now Young is seeking compensation, but how do you price that sort of thing out?

Actually, the American government has been happily practicing that sort of market estimation since the 1970s.

Speaking this week, Corry says, “If you use the DEAs valuation of them, probably in the neighborhood of $200,000 — plus some equipment and those sorts of things.”

Marhuana Pulp Cover

True Crime Tuesday: Cut Off Your Nose Edition

Man's Adventure (Samurai Decapitation Pulp Cover)
I think it’s fair to say we’ve all gone too far at least once. We’ve all made decisions in life that we regret. Sometimes you just need to make a clean break – but, on the other hand, not too clean:

From Spain, (via,) for example, we have the tales of two men with the same thought:

The hapless man, who has not been named, thought he’d be able to fool 11 insurance companies out of £2m by chopping his hand off with an electric saw.

‘The cut was too clean between the bone for a car crash, which is never so clean,’ said accident investigator José Luís Nieto.

‘This man might have got someone to use a saw to cut off his hand. A surgeon would never have done it.’

The second insurance claimant went a step further by cutting off his lower arm and claiming £500,000 for an ‘electric saw accident.’

His claim was also rejected after an investigation.

Well, you know, sometimes you just need to cut your losses and move on.

Sin On Wheels (trailer trash pulp cover)

Moving on, however, was exactly Audrey Ferguson’s problem – as WISTV reports.

The Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office says 51-year-old Audrey Ferguson of the Dorchester community has called EMS at least 100 times in the last seven years.

Is she extremely ill? Does she have a medical fetish? Is she just lonely?


“She’ll have a vague medical complaint, for instance abdominal pain,” said Dorchester County EMS Director Doug Warren. “She has medical complaints that are legitimate, and so until she’s been evaluated and determined not to be sick we have to assume she is.”

– and why would you ever be suspicious of a little old lady?

Ferguson apparently never even went into the hospital to get treated.


Instead she told hospital officials she was okay and left.


“We transport her to one of the area hospitals and then oftentimes before we can get our paperwork completed she’s signed out from the hospital and gone on to do other things,” said Warren.

Warren called the sheriff’s office and asked for an investigation.

The detective assigned to the case said he wanted to be contacted the next time Ferguson called for an ambulance.

Audrey did, at least, get one more ride on the government’s tab:

On Apr. 2, investigators said Ferguson’s free rides came to an end. A Dorchester County deputy was waiting at Trident Medical Center for an ambulance carrying Ferguson.

According to an incident report, he heard her call her son, saying she needed a ride. He also heard her tell a nurse that she wasn’t ill, that she was actually feeling fine and that she was leaving.

Ferguson did leave…in handcuffs. She was taken to the Dorchester County jail.

– but how could she possibly justify such extravagance!?

On the way to jail, Ferguson told a deputy why she called for an ambulance so many times.

According to the incident report, Ferguson said she didn’t have a car and this was the only way she had to get around and Medicaid paid for it anyway. It was part of her benefits.

Forget looking into cutting healthcare costs, though: Apparently the real savings may be in fuel efficient ambulances.

And all of those ambulance trips taken by Ferguson?

Each one costs $425[.]

Sin Street (Prostitute Pulp Cover)

Finally, brings us the tale of an entirely different sort of bill:

Manhattan, Kansas, police are trying to figure out what to do with a man who called 911 in desperation after he could not pay a $400 fee to a prostitute.

The man reportedly requested a two-hour session from the pro in question. At the end of the session, he revealed to the woman that he had no money to pay her with. Understandably, the woman became upset. The man then called the police in fear that the woman or “her boss” would attempt to harm him.

A fear he may have been justified in having – even an honest burger-flipper will have issues with coming into work for a few hours without pay. Still, in the end, all involved received more than they had bargained for.

Riley County Police arrived at the mobile home and interviewed the man and the woman. No immediate arrests were made, but both people were listed as suspects on the criminal report. The man has since been charged with patronizing a prostitute and the woman has been charged with engaging in acts of prostitution.

Sin Street Scarlet Scarlet Patrol (prostitute pulp cover)

True Crime Tuesday: Perception Problems Edition

Black Mask Pulp Magazine Cover 1944
Today’s True Crime Tuesday is actually made up of articles handpicked by the mighty Opopanax, but, as I read through her suggestions, I noticed an odd thread running through the trio of tales.

We begin our journey of discovery in southeast Michigan, by way of The Daily Mail:

The robbery happened about 11:30 a.m. Saturday at a Fifth Third Bank branch in Macomb County’s Clinton Township, about 15 miles north-northeast of Detroit.

Police say a woman about 60 years old told bank employees she had a bomb in her cloth bag and demanded money.

It’s hard to divine intentions from such a short article, but I feel like Michigan’s current hard times will only bring on more of this sort of thing. This lady should be babysitting grandchildren or playing Cribbage, not robbing banks.

The suspect was roughly 200 pounds, Clinton Township Police Sgt. Deena Terzo told the Detroit News.

‘It was a closed bag, so you couldn’t see into it, and no one wanted to open it,’ he said.

I’d be jumpy too, given the state of the world, but the only real danger was perhaps that of being fed a hearty meal.

After [she] fled, the Michigan State Police Bomb Squad evacuated the building.

While performing an X-Ray on the bag, they discovered two cans of spaghetti sauce.

The Shadow - The White Column

While I have sympathy for the those who were in perceived danger during the spaghetti heist, it’s hard to understand what exactly Richard Treis’ views are – and I’m not just talking about that milky Bond villain eye, either.

Richard Treis Robert "Biz" Swinney
Text and image from

Seven people […] face federal charges, including conspiracy to make meth, possess pseudoephedrine and drug-making equipment, distribution of meth and maintaining a drug-involved premises.

Meth is definitely the drug of our time – its relative ease of creation almost makes a downward spiral of addiction and despair into a DIY project.

Still, sometimes, as with Bob Villa or Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, it takes a team.

Police said Swinney had to mobilize at least 150 people over 24 months to comply with purchase restrictions while buying enough decongestants to support the needs of meth cooks[.]

Swinney recruited relatives, gang members, homeless people and random others, Briggs said. “Just about every day, they were standing outside of stores handing out $20 bills asking people to buy a $10 box and keep the change.”

Forget what I said about DYI projects, this is almost the Wikipedia of drug addiction. What do you do when that sizable a portion of your community has a hand in the supply chain?

Despite the ten dollar bounty, Swinney wasn’t losing any money –

The investigator said Swinney sold to Treis and others at $50 to $80 a box. Swinney told police he lived off of the money for the last two years.

– and the sight of green can make even the worst of people colour blind. (Maybe especially if you only have one good eye.)

Treis, 38, joined the Aryan Nations while in a federal penitentiary for meth-related crimes, according to Franklin County officials and the Drug Enforcement Administration. They said Swinney, 22, is a documented gang member.

Easy Money by Frank Peace

As for Jerimiah Hartline, 19 – well, as UPI reports, he may as well have been blind as far as his driving skills are concerned.

The California Highway Patrol said Jerimiah Hartline, 19, of Tennessee stole the semi from a weigh station on Interstate 15 in Rainbow around 6 p.m. Saturday and drove it to Temecula, where he collided with a Toyota Tacoma that in turn struck a Toyota 4-Runner and a Mercedes, The (Riverside) Press-Enterprise reported Wednesday.

Investigators said Hartline struck two other cars before losing control of the truck, which flipped onto its side and blocked all four northbound lanes of the interstate.

Maybe it’s just me, but as soon as a truck gets flipped over I start thinking Arnold has come back from the future to save us from Robot Armageddon. Jerimiah had a different apocalypse in mind, though.

Highway Patrol spokesman Nathan Baer said Hartline climbed into a van and demanded a ride, but the driver instead pulled him out of the vehicle and held him with the help of other bystanders until officers arrived.

What danger was so imminent that he required such a dramatic escape?

“He said zombies were chasing him and he had to get out of here,” Baer said.

I think “rushing home to catch the latest Walking Dead” would have been an equally valid lame-excuse. There is, however, the possibility that his “doors of perception” were simply ajar.

Baer said police have yet to determine whether Hartline was under the influence of drugs.

Strange Detective Mysteries - Coming of the Boneless Men - Help the blind pulp cover

True Crime Tuesday: Good Intentions Edition

Black Mask Sept. 43

Whichever wise old philosopher coined the phrase “the road to hell is paved with good intentions” must have been peeking ahead to today’s True Crime Tuesday.

We open on Ruth Amen, an office manager from Florida. (Of course it’s Florida.)

Ruth, as the HuffPo reports, just wanted to throw her boss a nice surprise birthday party – but she forgot one minor detail.

Amen, 46, who worked at Gulf To Bay Realty, organized the party for one of the owners of the Boca Grande, Fla., business, without getting permission to use company cash to pay for the event.

It turns out, however, that where there’s high-priced cigar smoke, there may be fire:

That inspired those bosses to take a closer look at the books she had handled for them as office manager for 10 years.

After ten years of employment who can say they wouldn’t occasionally misuse office resources? You know how these things start – you bring home a few pens, a couple of sticky note stacks, then, suddenly:

Investigators accused Amen of using nearly $92,000 in company finances to pay her personal credit card debt. She also issued herself $65,000 worth of “extra” paychecks and didn’t deduct the cost of insurance from her paychecks, reports.

Oops. $157k buys a lot of “extra” sticky notes.

Startling Stories 1952

Dustin Canup, 20, and Sareena Morrison, 18, on the other hand, were looking for something more meaningful in their lives than office work – unfortunately, they weren’t content to just buy a puppy.


According to the Loveland Reporter Herald, which cites an arrest affidavit, police received a tip last week concerning a fifteen-year-old girl with a 970 area code who was advertising for sex online.

Don’t be confused, the girl in question, Morrison, was actually of legal age, but the six-year-old she was attempting to purchase a tryst with clearly wasn’t.

Detectives subsequently traced the number to Morrison, who lives in Berthoud, and laid the groundwork for a sting operation by texting her under the guise of a man with a six-year-old child. Morrison is said to have arranged a meet with father and daughter at a Loveland motel, where she and a male companion would take part in sex acts with the girl.

You may be thinking, “didn’t they watch Dateline’s To Catch a Predator?” to which I would reply: “Yes, probably too much so.”

Shortly after their arrival at the motel, detectives busted Morrison and Canup, who was reportedly packing a large knife and a pair of handcuffs.


[T]he pair intended to rob the man and take the little girl with them to raise as their own child.

Startling Stories 1944

True Crime Tuesday: Better Left Alone Edition

Call it Marriage by Gail Jordan
Today’s True Crime Tuesday offers up a triple helping of mislaid criminal intentions.

For example: Have you ever found yourself in the uncomfortable situation of discovering that a ring you’ve been wearing for some time simply won’t come off? What solution did you undertake? Water? Maybe a bit of butter?

Alfredo Malespini III was in just that predicament – as a federal prison guard, however, he took his efforts to escape both the ring, and the marital bond associated with it, very seriously:


A criminal complaint said Bradford police were called just before 9 p.m. March 2 and were met by Alfredo Malespini III, 31, who told officers he was “trying to get rid of his wedding ring” and decided to “shoot it off.” The Bradford Era first reported the shooting on Friday.

Ouch – a rough solution, indeed, but can you guess what’s rougher still?

The gunshot badly mangled Malespini’s finger, but didn’t remove the ring[.]

The Finger Man by Raymond Chandler

Perhaps the unidentified skater in our next case, found at, was simply attempting to help Malespini?

The 42-year-old man, whose name has not been released, was first spotted skating toward the chainsaw section of the Lowe’s on the 400 block of Bayshore Boulevard around 2:30 p.m. Friday, said police spokeswoman Officer Ellina Teper.

“He selected a chainsaw and tried to skate out the front entrance,” Teper said. “A store clerk stopped him and asked if he had a receipt for the saw.”

Laugh if you want, a chainsaw wielding rollerblader seems like a great zombie deterrent. The thief in question must have thought so as well, as he wasn’t willing to give up so easily as simply “needing a receipt.”

He said he had a receipt outside and put the chainsaw down, but instead of skating outside he turned around and glided back toward the chainsaw section, Teper said.

He grabbed another one and, this time, tried to skate out through the store’s garden center, Teper said. A security guard stopped him and held him until police arrived. He was booked on suspicion of burglary and was found to have several outstanding traffic violation warrants.

I suppose, at least, that the traffic violations may explain the footwear – it’s tougher, however, to justify the actions reported by

The story begins when a man and woman were evicted from their apartment on James Lee Boulevard and temporarily moved in with another woman, according to an arrest report. On Jan. 24 the couple argued with the woman and moved out, taking most of their belongings with them. They left behind two mounted deer heads the woman was storing in her motor home.

Heads that, as we shall see, they clearly held dear.

The next day the female member of the couple returned and demanded access to her deer heads. The woman refused. Later that afternoon, the man received a text message from the woman saying he could come and get their deer heads, which were outside the woman’s apartment. When the man arrived the deer heads were nowhere in sight.

Confession: I may have selected this article entirely for the phrase “access to her deer heads.”

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On Jan. 27 police talked to the woman, who said the couple owed her money so she took the deer heads. She said she arranged with a neighbor to return the deer heads when the couple arrived with her money.

The neighbor, however, said he didn’t want to get involved and left the deer heads outside. He said he saw the woman talking to an unknown male, and later saw them leave with the deer heads.

The woman was charged with petit[sic?] theft and will appear in court March 26.

The lesson? Always pay ahead.

Whitetail Nation by Pete Bodo