Is My Faberge Egg in the Trunk, Too?

April 28. Several weeks ago, a Costa Mesa man's weathered '88 Chrysler LeBaron was impounded after he was caught driving without a license, and he was subsequently thrown in jail. Before towing, the car was catalogued by police. The report listed "factory tires and wheels in poor condition." A few days after his imprisonment, the arrested man's wife arrived at a towing company's impound lot to retrieve the car. Unfortunately, she didn't have enough money to pay the towing and storage fees, so the car remained, accruing greater fines each day. Last week, the wife called the police, claiming that her husband had heard from other inmates that the towing company "steals," so she "wanted to know if the $3,500 gold wheels were still on her husband's car." Surprisingly, no $3,500 gold wheels were on the car.

I WAS, UM, ROBBED, KINDA April 29. A man staying at the Tahiti Inn motel called the Costa Mesa Police Department, claiming someone broke into his room through the window and stole $51. There were no witnesses. The investigating officer arrived to find the victim sitting in his room. The window was indeed smashed and a small amount of glass lay on the floor. Upon closer examination, the window was only 12 inches wide—a tight squeeze for even the most Lilliputian klepto. Curiously, the window screen remained screwed in place beyond the broken pane, blocking outside access. Closer inspection of the room revealed piles of glinting change totaling nearly $100. One crisp bill lay boldly atop the dresser, untouched. A fancy portable stereo system squatted in the corner.

"Was all this money and gear here during the time of the robbery?" the officer asked.

"Yes."

"Was the door locked the entire time?"

"Yes."

"So the only entrance was through this tiny window?"

"I guess."

"Why would the perpetrator —presuming they could fit through the window—swipe only a small portion of the available money, leave the stereo and other items intact, and then exit, taking the time to courteously replace the window screen?"

"I don't know. I wasn't around."

"I see. Did you make this story up?"

"No."

"The manager of the motel told us he warned you not to break anything in the room and that if you did, you would be evicted. Did you break the window by accident and then report this false burglary so you wouldn't get kicked out of the motel?"

"Um . . . no."

The alleged thief is still at large. Or at small.

THE NAME IS BONG . . . JAMES BONG May 1. A UC Irvine officer walking the beat spied a student strolling nearby. Jutting proudly from the student's shirt pocket was what looked like a bag of marijuana. Incredulous, the policeman swooped in for a closer look.

"Hey there."

"Hi!" the student said in return and smiled.

"What do you got in that pocket of yours?"

"Oh, this?" the student replied. "Just some class-registration stuff." Cheerfully staring the officer in the eye, he dexterously reached his fingers around the suspicious bag, extracted a folded piece of paper from the same pocket, and thrust it toward the cop. The bag lay undisturbed.

"Nice try," the officer replied, grabbing the bag and holding it up.

Stunned, the student gaped at the damning evidence and cried out, "Holy shit! I'm an idiot!"

DON'T FORGET: SUNDAY IS MOTHER'S DAY May 4. A woman called the Tustin Police Department on Thursday, claiming she heard someone throwing rocks at her window. She suspects the culprit was her grandmother.

STIFFED May 5. A suspect entered the Los Caballeros Sports Club in Fountain Valley and requested a massage to soothe his sore, stiff neck. Several minutes passed, and the tense man had not yet been attended to. He grew increasingly frustrated and raised his voice. After several outbursts, a female masseuse asked him to leave. The suspect then shoved her, slamming her back against the wall, and fled. The masseuse told police that as a result of the assault, she had "soreness and stiffness in her neck." No word was given on how long she had to wait for a co-worker to massage it.

 
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