CHICKEN RUNS 


SEPT. 13, 1:06 A.M.: A man was strolling past a popular fast-food chicken restaurant in the 1200 block of West Church Street when another man suggested, according to police reports, "if he wanted to hurry up and get anything from the store to hurry up and get it." It was an offer too tasty to resist.

The midnight stroller contorted his body through an already smashed drive-through window and got to work in the kitchen. Perhaps the bewitching aroma of Southern-fried chicken and honey-butter biscuits put our poultry perp in a daze, as he didn't notice two police cars promptly pull up. While the suspect shimmied back toward the drive-through window with a large metal pan in hand, an officer positioned himself at the window. He watched as the pan-toter jogged back into a walk-in cooler and exited hauling another pan stacked with $50 worth of chicken. At this point, the officer ordered him to the ground at gunpoint, where he was soon after arrested for the petty theft of poultry.

Our burglar's excuse, according to police reports: He was "only going to get some chicken." At least he didn't try faking Louisiana residency, right?

SEPT. 11, 3:30 P.M.: A 51-year-old man had his spiffy new Jeep hastily valet-parked in a hospital parking lot on the corner of Alden Road and East Princeton Street. Upon returning at 6:30 a.m., he noted the doings of an evildoer.

During the 15-hour time gap, the suspect or suspects involved smashed his car's right rear passenger window with a "1-inch round/3-inch long object," police reports speculate. Although a Gillette Mach 3 Turbo or a miniature stapler both match the mystery glass-shattering gadget's dimensions, neither seem up to the task. Police reports assume "the chuck from an air hose" was employed instead. Our skilled suspect(s) slipped digits through the tiny hole, unlocked the door and hopped inside. The only item removed was a bulky black leather duffel bag worth approximately $30. This bag concealed, however, a worthy piece of fashion any car burglar would jump for joy to own: body armor – and golden, at that – valued at $700.

Looking good ain't easy. Especially for burglars.

SEPT. 11, 1:30 P.M.: Some criminals have a lot of nerve.

An approximately 25-year-old man walked into a submarine sandwich shop in the 30 block of North Orange Avenue. The shop's employee was headed toward the back of the restaurant, but the newcomer kindly called him over. Instead of ordering a 6-inch turkey on wheat, he calmly asked for a pen while picking up a store flier. After scribbling a bit, the interloper handed the flier to our poor employee with a smirk, perhaps. The flier read, "Give me your money, I have a gun," police reports state. The employee complied and handed the spunky suspect an undetermined amount of moolah. "Go ahead, call 911, I don't care," the robber added with sass, the reports include. After stuffing the cash in his front pants pocket, he hopped over the customer railing and exited the store.

Note to criminal types: Knocking over a sandwich shop does not make you a badass.

SEPT. 11, 6:13 A.M.: That same day, while darkness still coated the skies, a pricier burglary occurred at a golf course in the 3600 block of Eighth Street. The burglar(s) took advantage of the business' closure by using a pair of wrenches to pry open a gate encompassing the golf cart storage area. The suspect or suspects then left the fingerprint-festooned wrenches at the foot of the now-unhinged gate before proceeding. Just brilliant.

Four E-Z-GO golf carts, valued at approximately 14,000 clams collectively, were somehow wheeled off the property. Before the burglar or burglars fled atop their motorized 25-mph stallions, however, it's apparent that some tomfoolery was had, as a fifth golf mobile was driven in a pond near the seventh hole. Damage to the $3,500 cart is estimated at $5,000.

And what do you know? The business doesn't have a video monitoring security system.

SEPT. 10, 3 A.M.: Lucky for you, I'm not done with the chicken-meat chicanery.

Yes, that fast-food joint in the 1200 block of West Church Street was burglarized twice in the same week. This time the perps smashed the drive-through window with a chunk of concrete. Sometime that night, the suspect or suspects at hand slipped through the window, snooping inside the business' main office. They found nothing worthy of pocketing – besides the uncooked chicken stored elsewhere, that is. This time, four metal pans piled with pinkish flesh were heisted from the walk-in cooler, valued at $160 total.

The store's alarm sounded at the time of the burglary, but the store manager declined dispatching enforcement because it "was determined to have been caused by semi-tractor trailers that were passing by on Orange Blossom Trail," police reports indicate. Fancy that.

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