Crime Blotter

Franks & Beans in Downtown Columbia

Plus: Car Thief Abandons LeSabre

By Preach Jacobs
Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Franks & Beans: A 39-year-old man was arrested after exposing himself to an employee at a public building in downtown Columbia. Authorities were called, and once they arrived they caught the suspect fondling himself. Turns out the suspect has been charged twice for pulling similar stunts in two separate counties. He must learn that exposing himself to the public will not be a profitable proposition. Well, unless you’re a Kardashian.

Car Thief: Authorities are searching for a man accused of stealing a car from someone’s home in northeast Columbia. Cops were alerted to the stolen car, a 1992 Buick LeSabre, and found it a few blocks away, apparently abandoned. Probably because it was a 1992 Buick LeSabre. Hey, even crooks have standards.

Buy It Back: Authorities arrested a Spartanburg woman not only for stealing items from a trucker’s cab but for idiotically trying to sell those items back to him. The woman snuck inside the while the driver was pumping gas and took his phone and GPS unit. When a clerk told the driver about a woman ransacking his car, he followed her across the street. After the trucker had someone call his cell phone and it rang while the woman was holding it, she attempted to sell him back his GPS for $75. One would think she would have just accepted defeat gracefully.

Life’s a Gamble: Cops busted up a gaming room in a home in Lexington, which really wasn’t much more than a living room filled with very, very cheap bartop video gambling machines — you know, the kind you slip a dollar in. Three people, including the owner of the house, were arrested; they each posted the $4,000 bail. A living room full of gaming machines sounds like the setup for a sequel to the Ocean’s 11 series — except everyone is in a retirement home scamming people out of their bingo money. Let’s hope Clooney declined the starring role.

Red Huffy: Authorities are looking for an unknown suspect who’s hit up some convenience stores in the Sumter area. Surveillance video caught the suspect going in and stealing 60 cartons of Newports. (We’re not sure what that street value is — but in prison, he’d be Donald Trump.) One would think the po-po could find the suspect, given that his getaway vehicle of choice was a … red bicycle. Hey, you can’t be a crook and not have dependable transportation. No arrests have been made, but authorities are keeping their ears open for the sound of playing cards flickering in the spokes of the bike tires.

Tip of the Week: If you’re going to try to impersonate a police officer, you might want to have something better than one of those fake-looking badges you find in a Cracker Jack box. A 29-year-old man went to a hotel in Irmo in full Army combat uniform, pretending to be military police. He asked the clerks to give him information on two women staying at the hotel. The clerks refused, even after the man flashed his fake badge. The suspect found the women without the help of the clerks, but by that time the cops arrived. Authorities arrested the man and charged him with impersonating an officer. We’re not sure as to what he would have done to the two women. Maybe this was just a bachelorette party that went so very wrong.

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