SUDS SWIPED 


OCT. 11, 3 P.M.: Ever have a craving for an after-school snack? That's apparently the justification for the following crime, though heisting a Yoo-Hoo at the nearest 7-Eleven wouldn't cut it – oh no.

Sometime before 5:30 p.m., a famished filcher or filchers explored a school's football stadium, gaining entry into a concession stand by smashing off a lock with a mystery tool. While sunbeams spilled into the unlit stand, the burglar or burglars sated starvation by pocketing $50 worth of molar-rotting munchies. Meanwhile, that broken door's going to cost $200 to fix. Ouch.

OCT. 8, 10 P.M.: While our victim sweetly slumbered, trouble crept into a home in the 5600 block of Gaitlin Avenue. A sneaking suspect or suspects opted to peek at the unknown goodies concealed within a storage closet nestled in a back porch. Although the porch door was locked, additional snooping proved fruitful: Three neighboring doors connected to the same porch were unlocked. Easy enough.

The burglar or burglars were quick to unlock the prized closet with some trusty tool, revealing a stash of even trustier tools inside: a $1,200 tackle box stuffed with various fishing paraphernalia, a $110 precision laser, two drills valued at $400 and four bounteous toolboxes worth $5,000, among other plunder. Altogether, the handy suspect or suspects heisted approximately $8,350 worth of gadgets.

There's no doubt in this author's mind that we have the dirty work of a man deeply embittered by Home Improvement's cancellation on our hands. Police reports do not state, however, whether or not the remnants of any flannel shirts were recovered.

OCT. 7, 1 A.M.: Sometimes you just gotta have an icy brew.

It was a calm morning like hundreds of others at a popular convenience store in the 700 block of North Mills Avenue. The Go-Go Taquitos were piquant and piping hot, the prepackaged sandwiches waited eagerly in wrappings of shiny cellophane and all the Pringle cans were stacked in place, flaunting spherical perfection. No one felt threatened when a 5-foot-7 man in his mid-30s stepped inside. Sporting sandy blond hair, blue jeans and "a possible black eye," police reports state, the dude took only seconds to decide what he wanted to start his day: beer.

He juggled a jangling 12-pack of Heineken in one hand and a 12-pack of Budweiser in the other, and dashed out the door in a frenzy, without bothering to pay. Outside, he hopped into a black truck where a fellow 30-something pal awaited. The beer they heisted was valued at $26.39.

As the duo sped off a generator, parts from an air conditioner and two window screens – no doubt worth far more than the price of two 12-packs – fell out of the pickup truck. Moral of the story: Make sure all materials contained in the getaway vehicle are securely fastened.

OCT. 6, 4 P.M.: A snafu ensued when police officers responded to an afternoon burglary, but could find no point of entry. No unknown thingamajigs were used to smash doors, shatter windows, unlock keyholes or perform other thieving acts. In fact, the business' alarm was on. Instead, it appears, the burglar or burglars at hand possessed some superhuman ability to walk through walls. Are O-Town criminals evolving to a higher plane? I shudder to think.

However entry was gained, the suspect or suspects made haste in heisting goods from this car engine shop in the 1400 block of West Anderson Street. Inside, the burglar(s) scaled a flight of stairs and rummaged through an open office, extracting a $1,086 check made out to the company from an envelope atop a desk. But perhaps the beefier booty was the eight magazines worth $50 stuffed in the desk's drawer that our burglar or burglars labeled must-haves. Police reports fail to state what kind of magazines our perp or perps found tantalizing enough to steal (Couture Carburetor, perhaps?), but this author would like to know.

Officers were also perplexed as to the suspect's or suspects' exit point, indicating that superpowers had again been employed.

OCT. 4, 9:43 P.M.: Can you sugarcoat a felony with witty words, kids? No. You cannot.

After a tasty pizza meal with dad at a local pizza/espresso shop in the 400 block of East Central Boulevard, a 210-pound man felt the need to hurl the store's chairs and tables about the place. The Hulk-like rampage continued outdoors, where the man bashed outside railings with various and sundry objects. When officers arrived, the man's father told them his son was "very drunk and very upset," and "he is just mad at the world and out of control," police reports state. And we've all had days like that, right?

Barely 10 minutes later, seven gunshots were fired toward Lake Eola Park. Police determined that the shots had emanated from the fourth floor of a nearby apartment where this unhappy, unsober man just happened to live.

"I fired off a few rounds, I did," the man admitted to police. "I fired off a few rounds into the grass." Reports note that he went on to say that "he had always wanted to shoot his rifle out of his window." Honesty is the best policy.

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