When big pockets are outlawed, only outlaws will have big pockets
Law enforcement officials may well be pondering the wisdom of the public popularity of big-pocket pants, especially given the things people are putting in them.
So it was that on Feb. 16 at about 5 p.m. a 21-year-old Agua Caliente man entered the Rite Aid drug store in the Maxwell Village shopping center, went straight to the liquor aisle and stuffed a 1.75 liter bottle of booze in each pants pocket. He then returned to the exit and walked out the door with his hands cupping the tops of the family-sized bottles in an unsuccessful attempt to conceal from view the cargo in his cargo pockets.
The store manager saw the man leaving the store with the highly conspicuous liquor, stopped him and said, “I can see the bottles in your pockets.”
The man tried to push past him, another employee intervened and together they detained the overly ambitious shoplifter until police arrived.
When an officer began inquiring into the thief’s identity he proved to have no ID, no wallet and a bad attitude. Asked for his name he gave a false one. The officer ran the name, and it didn’t match the suspect so he asked again. “You figure it out,” the unfriendly filcher responded.
Police finally came up with the man’s real name, reviewed the store’s surveillance video, which clearly revealed the theft taking place and then booked the man into the Sonoma County jail on a charge of petty theft and a DUI probation violation.
The recovered loot was a big bottle of UV vodka, valued at $16.99, and an equally large but significantly higher quality bottle of Sauza tequila valued at $37.99.
In other Sonoma Valley law enforcement incidents:
Wednesday, Feb. 13:
2:32 p.m. — Dude, where’s my identity? The San Diego Sherriff’s office called their counterparts in the Valley investigating an identity theft case. They were concerned because they had discovered a female working at Sonoma Acres nursing care facility at 765 Donald St. had been doing so using the identity of a woman from San Diego.
Deputies from the Sonoma Sherriff’s department found that the suspect had already been fired from Sonoma Acres when they inquired after her whereabouts there. She also could not be found at her home on Highway 12. They then contacted the suspect by phone. She swore up and down that she only ever used the fraudulent ID to obtain work, and that she had been doing so for the past 12 years, after she purchased a Social Security card on the black market. She further said that she’d had no trouble and done nothing else wrong.
The suspect could face up to a year in jail or a $10,000 fine, provided the police arrest her. The matter has been sent to the DA’s office for review. Police did not release the identity of the victim since it’s not her real identity, and really, hasn’t this victim in San Diego been through enough?
Thursday, Feb. 14:
6:03 p.m. – Shattering and entering. After a day of work, a man returned to he and his wife’s home on the 400 block of Walnut Avenue at 4:15 p.m. to find the glass on the back door shattered and on the floor. He cleaned up the mess, and covered the missing glass with a piece of cardboard. Finding nothing amiss at first, he assumed that the glass had just broken by itself because the door was old.
But before long he started to notice coin dishes had been emptied, and when he inspected his bedroom he found that all the drawers on one dresser were extended and that a small wooden jewelry box on the dresser had been opened and rifled through, leading him to determine that, in fact, a burglar had broken the glass on the aged backdoor, unlocked it and let themselves in. He quizzed the neighbors, asking if they’d seen anything, but nobody had. He finally called the police, ending his nearly two-hour investigation.
He and his wife determined that $1,000 worth of jewelry had vanished, though they were unable to describe the missing items. Left in the home were several other lightweight valuables, including a computer and digital camera. The burglary had occurred sometime between 8 a.m., when the wife left the house, and 4:15 p.m., when the husband returned home. With no leads or even descriptions of the missing items, police are not optimistic about their chances of finding the purloined jewelry.
Monday, Feb. 19:
11:45 a.m. Dude, where’s my Rascal? A mobility chair was reported stolen from a carport on Griswold Avenue in Kenwood. The mobility chair-type scooter’s value was estimated by the reporting party to be over $1,000, making this a grand theft Amigo. Police were investigating, steeling themselves for the inevitable low-speed chase through the mean streets of Oakmont.