BUSTED! Real Stories of Genuine Absurdity Marcha/April 2023

James L. McClinton, PH.D.

It’s shocking – criminals will break the law even while in courtA Georgia man and a fellow codefendant are facing new allegations that they conducted a hand-to-hand drug deal inside the courtroom while jury selection was taking place. Courtroom surveillance footage shows the alleged drug deal, with one man sliding something into the other man’s hands. A deputy spotted the transaction and confiscated what was later determined to be a Percocet pill. Deputies reportedly found Percocet, marijuana, tobacco, and other contraband wrapped in plastic on one of the men. The Fulton County District Attorney’s Office says any charging decision for the incident will be made after a full investigation. (At least they did the crime right in the courthouse which saves the need for a warrant.)

If you’re going to be a porch pirate, the least you could do is wear an eye patchThe Tulsa Police Department (TPD) arrested an alleged “Porch Pirate with an unusual and questionably effective mask.” An officer recognized the suspect from previous porch pirate cases when the suspect was wearing women’s underwear as a mask. According to TPD, they went to the suspect’s home, west of downtown Tulsa, knocked on the door, and saw the suspect inside. Police said the man remained inside the home and would not talk to officers. A search warrant for the home was obtained and signed. After the warrant was executed, “Long John Silver” exited the home and was arrested. (He didn’t speak because he was thong-tied.)

This gives new meaning to the term jailbird… A birdbrained suspect was recently detained after authorities discovered the presence of a backpack. The suspect, a pigeon, was detained in a Canadian prison after it was discovered to be carrying a backpack which contained crystal meth. The bird was captured at the Pacific Institution correctional facility near Vancouver after officers noticed the flying felon and its cargo. Prison staff members set a trap and caught the foul fowl, after spotting the backpack on the bird. Prison authorities are worried that the incident reveals an evolving trend of smuggling narcotics into prisons and are conducting an investigation. (Next assignment: locating a stool pigeon.)

This smooth criminal is now in a jam… TSA officers at JFK Airport recently dealt with a sticky situation. A Rhode Island man was stopped after passing his carry-on baggage through an X-ray unit. The X-ray machine immediately revealed that he was carrying two jars of peanut butter, each containing parts of a disassembled semiautomatic handgun. The .22 caliber gun parts were wrapped in plastic and the gun’s magazine was loaded. Port Authority Police confiscated the items and arrested him. It is legal to transport your gun on an airplane, but you must follow strict security protocols. (Talk about a jarring discovery!)

It always feels good to be wanted… A Georgia man is behind bars after questioning why he wasn’t among the most wanted people in his county. The Rockdale County Sheriff’s Office had posted a list of their ten “most wanted” violent offenders on social media. Just a few hours after making the post, the man entered the comment section and asked, “How about me?” The sheriff’s office replied to his comment stating, “You are correct. You have two warrants – we are on the way.” Shortly afterwards, the sheriff’s office made another post showing the man being arrested while seemingly wearing the same clothes as his profile photo. He is currently being held on two charges of felony probation violation. (If he had only waited, he probably would have moved from number 11 to number 10.)

It sounds like you both have seen too many Fast and Furious moviesTwo Missouri individuals are facing various charges after stealing from a clothing store in Springfield. But, there’s more to the story. The Springfield Police Department reports that the two thieves stole merchandise from the Ross Dress for Less store and, in their haste to make a quick getaway, the thieves crashed their cars into each other. After these goofballs hit each other, the thieves fled on foot, but were quickly located by officers and placed under arrest. (How do you explain this to your insurance company?)

I thought only birds were that dumbA 17-year-old Washington state man was caught on video running into a plate glass window as he attempted to get away with stolen goods, knocking himself unconscious. The robbery happened in broad daylight at a Louis Vuitton store in Bellevue. The suspect grabbed handbags off of displays and tried to dart out of the store, police said. The thief blew it as he tried to flee, knocking himself out by running into a plate glass window. More than 50 repeat offenders have reportedly been arrested in Bellevue for retail robbery and shoplifting and the county has charged 59 organized retail theft cases so far this year. (After that, the window cleaner should definitely get a raise.)

Next up – DIY speed bumps!Residents of the Capitol Hill area of Seattle recently took matters into their own hands after failing to get any satisfaction from the city. Someone painted a crosswalk at an intersection, but the Seattle Department of Transportation quickly removed the unauthorized stripes saying, “Improperly painted crosswalks give a false sense of safety which puts pedestrians in danger. There are better ways for people to work with us.” The coleader of Central Seattle Greenways called it “frustrating” that the city can move so quickly to remove the rogue crosswalk, but “it can take years, if not decades, or never, frankly, to get crosswalks and other safety improvements installed.” (Odd that SDOT has the resources to remove a citizen painted crosswalk within 24 hours.)