Police Beat

March 15, 8:17 a.m.: Officer Hayes responded to a report of criminal mischief in the 2100 block of Oregon Street. He met with a 66-year-old victim about someone vandalizing his car, as the report reflects: "The victim states that on 3/14/2006 at 2100 hours, he parked and locked his vehicle in his driveway, at this address. Sometime before 3/15/2006 at 0700 hours, unknown suspect(s) damaged the victim's vehicle by spray painting the words 'spic mutha fucka,' on the right side of the vehicle."

Aside from being a great speller, you gotta be one tough "mutha fucka" to go and spray paint a senior citizen's vehicle – causing $500 worth of damage – while he's sleeping.

March 17, 5:43 p.m.: In the 600 block of Romano Avenue, Officer Jones spoke to our 55-year-old victim in reference to a residential burglary. The suspect(s) "used an unknown tool" and caused $150 worth of damage to "the north carport door" by prying it open. This was the least of our victim's worries, as the report states: "Once inside, the unknown person(s) removed a 500 pound steel safe … `that` included various jewelry, such as a Rolex watch, and a three carat diamond ring." Ouch!

But the perp(s) didn't stop there, he/she/they/it also removed a Craftsman drill kit, a leveler, a portable light, a VCR/DVD player, a digital camera, two movie cameras, miscellaneous jewelry from a jewelry box, a lawn mower, an edger, a blower and a chainsaw. Total estimated value of the stolen items: $31,220. Officer Jones' report continues: "Nothing else appeared to be missing or disturbed." Was there anything left to steal?

March 19, 06:05 a.m.: "The `33-year-old` victim said that on 03/19/06, at approximately 0430 hours, after leaving Icon Night Club, she arrived at a BP gas station located `in the 400 block of North John Young Parkway` and after she pumped her gas into the vehicle, and got in her vehicle the passenger door opened, and a black male told her, 'Get out of the car.' He was holding a pistol. At that same moment, the victim's `26-year-old` boyfriend, who was in the back seat, told her to pull off. The victim took off, and at least three shots were fired at the vehicle," reads Officer Nazario's report.

Looks like "liquid courage" saved the day, but this couple was extremely lucky, as reflected in the police report: "Vehicle has what appears to be an exit bullet hole on the driver's door. It also has a bullet hole on the back windshield and the back frame, between the windshield and the right passenger rear door." The boyfriend got a good look at the perp and described a 6-foot-tall male, about 165 pounds, with dark-colored skin and brandishing a dark pistol.

March 21, 3 p.m.: This is the first case to make your correspondent openly weep since taking on the Beat in January: Officer Vick responded to a residential burglary on the 5100 block of Millenia Boulevard and met with a 34-year-old victim. "The victim stated he left the living room windows up; however, he secured the door. The victim lives on the second floor and did not think anyone could gain access to his apartment." Guess what? "Upon his arrival at his apartment, at approximately 1505 hours, he discovered persons(s) unknown had used an unknown object and pried open the front door to his apartment" causing an estimated $100 in damage to the door. The perp(s) also caused approximately $100 in damage to a doorframe leading to the bedroom window, and another $50 of damage by cutting the window screen in the living room for good measure. Total damages thus far: $250, but that's only the beginning.

Officer Vick's report continues: "Once inside, the unknown suspect(s) ransacked the entire apartment, pulling dishes out of cabinets, clothes out of drawers, and turning over furniture, leaving everything in disarray. The victim was only able, at this time, to determine that $5,000 U.S. currency was missing from a bedroom closet. Also missing were various pieces of jewelry, including watches, diamond rings and necklaces valued at $13,000."

By now you are probably shocked and despondent over the loss of our victim's cash and jewelry (and the redundancy of reading about two similar crimes in this week's Beat), but this next part is what made your correspondent break down: "Also missing was an estimated 100 various video games valued at $8,000 and numerous martial arts equipment valued at $10,000." Total estimated loss: $36,000.

We mourn your loss, sir.

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