South-West Review police reports Sept. 22, 2013

West St. Paul

—Shoplifting must be fun for some people because there’s no other way this makes sense: Wal-Mart employees called police Sept. 16 to report a shoplifter who fled the store on foot with sunglasses and pair of gloves. In his escape, however, he left behind his female companion (who was unaware her beau made a break for it until loss prevention staff approached her) and a prescription bearing his name. For better or for worse, the theft was too brief for his carelessness to matter: officers caught the man crossing Thompson Oaks Golf Course and transported him back to Wal-Mart for identification.

—If you’re not good at shoplifting, you could at least practice lying: an employee at a liquor store on the 1600 block of Robert St. called police Sept. 11 after confronting a man who slipped a bottle off the shelf and into his bag. The shoplifter initially protested that he bought the bottle at another store (because who doesn’t carry a liquor bottle with them when going to the liquor store?), but eventually agreed to pay for the goods rather than deal with police.

—Smart phones can work wonders for your social life, but what happens when that technology falls into the wrong hands? A woman contacted the police department Sept. 16 to say she’d lost her phone a year ago. Since then, she said, she’d received numerous friend requests and messages from strangers on Facebook who seemed to know a lot about her personal life. An officer helped the woman change her privacy settings and advised her if the unwanted popularity continues he would contact Facebook administrators.

Check welfare
—Mornings are tough: a McDonald’s employee called police the morning of Sept. 11 to report a customer who passed out in his car with the engine running. The employee attempted to rouse the man and noted he had orange juice spilled all over his lap. Police and paramedics arrived and eventually managed to wake him; the paramedics suggested the soporific state was brought on by an unfavorable mix of alcohol and medication. The driver was released to his mother’s custody.

Disturbing the peace
—Police responded to a group home on the 300 block of Marie Ave. Sept. 11 to assist with an employee who wasn’t handling her termination well. No physical altercations were reported, but the manager said at one point the woman slammed a door so hard it broke and loudly harassed the other employees. Police managed to ease the tension and the woman finally agreed to leave after she received her final paycheck and was allowed to express herself on the comment section of her termination form.

—It’s hard to find good help these days, but bad help is just outside your door: a woman called police to the 1100 block of Kruse St. Sept. 11 to deal with a former employee who showed up in her driveway with a booming stereo and a chatty disposition. The man left before police arrived, but officers later caught up with him in Inver Grove Heights and disinvited him to the home.

—How do you express your rage toward another driver when there’s no blunt instruments at hand? Lotion, obviously: A woman called police from the parking lot of a liquor store on the 1100 block of Robert St. Sept. 12 to report an unknown man leapt out of his SUV and began smearing hand lotion all over her car while screaming at her.

Inver Grove Heights

Traffic stop
—No matter how hard you try to play it cool, you always forget something: an officer patrolling 55th St. in the early morning hours of Sept. 2 noticed a car rolling along without its headlights on. The driver realized his mistake soon after, but not before the officer caught up and pulled him over at 55th Street and Bishop Avenue. After approaching the car, the officer detected a particular odor emanating from inside. Both the driver and his passenger denied having any marijuana in the vehicle, but a quick search by the officer uncovered a stash hidden inside a Cheetos bag. The driver was cited and released at the scene.

Disorderly conduct
—When your understanding of the law is this tenuous, you should really be careful what you ask for: an officer was dispatched to an apartment building on the 7000 block of Concord Blvd. in the early morning hours of Sept. 3 to deal with noisy tenants. When he arrived at the building, the officer found the suspects — a couple — sipping tall boys and bantering in the hallway. The officer advised them to go inside and keep quiet. The woman was cooperative, but the male half rebuked the officer and asked to speak to his supervisor. Instead of taking the direct phone number provided by the officer, the man called 911 to say he was being harassed by police and needed a supervisor and then hung up without further explanation. A sergeant then responded to the scene and advised the man to quiet down and stay inside. When the man refused, the sergeant instructed the officer to cite him for disorderly conduct. The man insisted he couldn’t be given a citation for disorderly conduct as long as he stayed in his home, and then requested to speak with the sergeant’s superior officer. In a fit of righteous indignation, however, the man forgot both the officers’ orders and his own plan to stay inside; he was arrested for disorderly conduct the next time he entered the hall and transported to detox.

—Approximately 30 tires were dumped by an apartment building on the 5200 block of Greystone Drive Sept. 4. The reporting party noted seeing a Budget Rental truck in the area behind the building where the tires were dumped, but he didn’t catch the license plate number.

South St. Paul

Counterfeit bills
—An employee at a bar on the 900 block of N Concord St. called police Sept. 17 to report a box he found by the dumpster that was oozing fake $5 bills. The cash itself didn’t impress anyone (in his report, the officer dubbed it a “a poor attempt at counterfeiting currency) but the box in which it was found also contained a bundle of letters from two different men addressed to a woman who is currently in prison. Officers placed the box and its contents in the property room as potential evidence.

—South St. Paul and Inver Grove Heights police responded to 600 block of S Fifth St. to sweep the area for suspects after a detached garage was set on fire in the pre-dawn hours of Sept. 16. Officers stopped one man biking down Fifth Avenue and eventually arrested him for outstanding warrants, but did not charge him in connection with the arson incident.

—A woman called police to the 1100 block of S Seventh Ave. Sept. 16 after learning someone broke into her car and stole a machete and approximately 100 CDs.
Disorderly conduct—Police responded to disturbance on the 600 block of S Fourth Ave. in the early morning hours of Sept. 15. The homeowner said her 21-year-old daughter had come home extremely drunk and belligerent and began throwing things around the house. The woman said she’d also seen her daughter hit her boyfriend, who was also drunk but not nearly as problematic. Officers then met with the daughter, who, according to the report, was too drunk to form complete sentences, but somehow still managed to make it clear she knew her rights because she was enrolled in a criminal justice program. Officers obliged with some field experience by arresting her for disorderly conduct and transporting her to Dakota County Jail.

—A homeowner on the 1000 block of N 16th Ave. called police the morning of Sept. 15 after finding a stranger passed out in his bathroom. Police managed to wake the man but were unable to get any coherent explanation; the stranger did, however, cooperate with a breathalyzer test, which registered his blood alcohol content at .35. With detox full, officers transported the man to Regions Hospital and later mailed him a citation for public nuisance.

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