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Cops Corner
Sarasota Thursday, Apr. 30, 2009 13 years ago

Cops Corner


April 19
Heavy breather
11 a.m. — 500 block of South Gulfstream Avenue. Obscene Phone Calls. A woman reported that in the past 24 hours an unknown man from an unknown phone number made 17 obscene phone calls to her. Sometimes he just breathed on the other end of the line, but mostly he just laughed and said vulgar things. The phone company told her she would have to file a police report before it could help track the number.

April 20
Where’s the complaint department?
9:25 a.m. — First Street and Lemon Avenue. Disorderly Conduct. Police were called to the scene because a man was walking downtown yelling at the top of his lungs. The officer arrived and saw the man screaming, but at nobody in particular. The man said he was angry because “they” told him he couldn’t go to a homeless shelter. The officer asked him who “they” were, and the man said he didn’t know. Then the officer asked him if he had spoken to anyone at the homeless shelter, and the man said he didn’t. So the officer told him to go to the shelter and ask if he could get in, and the man did.

Dressing-room switcheroo
3 p.m. — 3500 block of South Tamiami Trail. Shoplifting. A woman in a department store took a dress off a rack, walked into the dressing room and walked out carrying nothing but her purse. She thought she was pretty clever, but store security guards catch folks trying this stunt all the time. They caught this woman, too, and, now, instead of wearing that dress, she’s wearing a jail jumpsuit.

Caught in the act
4:28 p.m. — 1300 block of Main Street. Theft. Three women walked into a clothing store and walked out carrying five shirts without paying for them. The clerk witnessed the theft and called police as the women walked down the sidewalk. An officer just happened to be right there. The women stuffed the shirts into a planter near the sidewalk to try to hide them, but the officer saw them do it and pulled the shirts out. They all had the sales tags still attached, and the women were arrested.

April 21
Mouth guard
7:45 a.m. — 1300 block of South Tamiami Trail. Petit Theft. A woman acting suspiciously in a supermarket caught the security guard’s attention. She was fidgeting with a tube of toothpaste. The guard watched her take the tube out of the box and place it in her purse. She discarded the box in the produce section. She shopped a little while longer and paid for all the items at checkout, but didn’t pull the toothpaste out of her purse. The guard got her license plate number, and an officer called her later and asked about the toothpaste. She told him that she planned to steal it, but wanted to “do the right thing,” so she took it out of her purse before checking out and put it on a random shelf in the store. The guard checked the shelf and the toothpaste was there, but he said he still wanted to prosecute, because the unpackaged toothpaste was considered a loss for the store.

April 22
Slipped a sip
4 p.m. — 900 block of Central Avenue. Petit Theft. A woman got into a cab for a ride to the above location. She told the driver she wanted to be in the front seat, because she’s claustrophobic. As they were driving, she told him she didn’t have any money, but her mother would pay him. She then grabbed his coffee and took a few sips of it. When they arrived at their destination, the woman got out without producing any money. Her mother was nowhere in sight. The driver then noticed that his wad of money was missing from his console. He called police, and officers found the woman and arrested her for failing to pay the driver and stealing his money. No charges were filed for drinking the coffee.

Health nuts
11:40 p.m. — 3800 block of South Tamiami Trail. Defrauding an Innkeeper. A man and woman walked into a restaurant at 7 p.m. to watch a baseball game. They ordered five beers, nachos and a pizza. About four hours later, the man ordered another beer and gave the waiter a credit card. The waiter left the table to ring up the tab, but the card was declined. When the waiter returned to the table, the couple was gone. Police looked up the name on the card, but nobody with that name matched the description of the man. Total value of their healthy meal was $46.08.

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