We all do dumb things, but some things are just dumber than that.
| We begin this evening's show with a string of robberies in the south and midwest states. One of the biggest armored car thefts in United States history caught a man on videotape looting the armored car company vault of $17 million. He has been sentenced to 7 and a half years in federal prison, but more than $2 millions is still missing. His only excuse, "I was stuck in a go-nowhere job, and I wasn't happy with my life. I'm sorry." Clay County, Indiana, officials promptly arrested a gentleman near the sheriff's office not too long ago. This man and another were arguing over an apparent stolen bicycle. After calming the two men down, the deputy allowed the man with the bike to explain how the had acquired the bicycle. The man with the bike stated boastfully, "I didn't steal the bike. I traded his wife a half a gram of crank for it." They never cease to amaze an office, but I reckon it's a humorous side compared to the tragedies our law enforcement officers face almost every day on the job. Here's more. A detective was called to transport a robbery suspect back to the crime scene so the victim could make a positive ID. The detective explained to the suspect that they were going to take him back to the scene, and when they arrived he was to get out of the car and face the victim for a positive ID. When they arrived at the scene, the suspect did exactly as he had been told to do. He stepped from the car and faced the victim. Then he blulrted out, "Yeah, that's her. That's the woman I robbed."
Local stores, especially those that are opened all night, are easy targets for any criminal to rob. Even some local businesses that we wouldn't think about being victimized are targets too. We'll take a look at a few of the 'locals' when we return from these commercials. An Iowa feed store was robbed not too long ago and all that the officers had to go on was an unusual shoe print found at the scene. Coincidently, not long after the robbery, a local resident strolled into the police station on some unrelated business. One of the officers struck up a conversation with the gentleman, and the conversation eventually turned to the feed store robbery. Noticing the man's shoes were a familiar name brand, the officer asked if he would mind showing him the bottom of his shoe. The man was more than willing to oblige a fellow officer; and besides, he had been wondering about the robbery himself. The officer saw that the shoe did not match the print and shook his head sadly, "No," he said, "that's not the right shoe." "Oh," the man explained, "I wasn't wearing these shoes when I robbed the feed store." A man in Arkansas robbed a pharmacy clerk at knife point. A few days later, the clerk picked the man out of a photo lineup and pressed charges. When the case was ready to go to trial, the man was nowher to be found. Officials feared he might have fled back to New York, but they weren't for sure. About a week later, federal authorities were alerted when his fingerprints were sent to Washington, D.C., as part of standard procedures for applying for a particular job. The man was soon arrested, charges, and convicted; and he didn't get the job he had applied for - - a police officer.
With all the bombings going on today, a person can't be too careful. But here is a story about a sudden turn of events. A woman went into a local back and demanded money from three tellers. She didn't look threatening at all, but then she showed them a small hand-held device that she claimed was a radio remote control that would detonate a car bomb outside, killing everyone inside the bank. Suddenly one of the tellers walked out from behind the counter and said she wasn't going to give the woman anything. The teller then wrestled her to the ground and held her there until police arrived. What made the teller think that the woman wouldn't detonate the bomb? "Well, the first clue was the word SEARS on the end of the garage door opener." A diamond is a woman's best friend? Well, not from this unfortunate, unlucky, fella. An attempted robbery went a bit haywire when a man decided he had devised the perfect plan: smash the window, grab the jewerly, and run. So he pried out a one-hundred pound manhole cover, hauled it over to the window, and threw it through. He grabbed all the jewelry he could carry and took off running. Turning a corner, he almost ran over a couple out on a midnight walk. Panicked, he bolted back into the street and headed for an alley and disappeared from sight - - down the open manhole. So much for brillant ideas. We all know how vulnerable convenient stores are, especially late at night. When we return from these messages, we'll hear about a couple of robbers that would have gotton away had it not been for their apparent attire. A local convenient store in Arkansas was recently robbed. Although the robber made off with an undetermined amount of cash, the store clerk was 'purdy shore' she could identify the gentleman with no trouble at all. Besides being able to identify the man's face since he wore nothing to conceal his face, he was also wearing a distinct company's construction hard hat. Not only was the company name printed along the front of the hat, in plain view, so was the man's full name. Police in Kansas were called to a robbery in progress at an all-night market. A male caucasian had brandished a weapon and determined money from the store clerk. After stuffing the money in his pants pocket, he fled down the street. Units responded quickly and chased after the man. The man thought he could outrun the police, but no matter how hard he tried, the police stayed with him. When he was finally apprehended, he asked the officers how they so easily kept up with him when he was such a good runner. One officer politely replied, "Oh, we just followed the lights." "The red blinking lights on your shoes," another officer told the puzzled dumb criminal.
For all the drug deals that are completed, it is nice to know there are some that go completely wrong. Here are a few 'crack heads' gone wrong. Detectives in Georgia answered a robbery call and found a man in total distress. Determining his house had definitely been robbed, the detectives asked him if anything was missing. "Yes," exclaimed the poor guy. "My stash of marijuana!" When asked about the bulge under her clothing, a Texas woman allegedly told state police she was pregnant. But with further investigation, they found the 'baby' to be a 3.5 pound bag of cocaine taped to her stomach. An undercover narcotics agent was in the process of making a buy when the dealer discovered his wire. The criminal shouted, "This is a wire! You're a cop!" The quick witted agent calmly replied, "Of course it's a wire, my lawyer told me to wear this so I'd have evidence to prove entrapment if I ever made a buy from an undercover officer. You ought to be wearing one, man. If a cop busts us and we go to court, it's our word against the cop's, and who do you think a judge is going to believe? But it you've got them on tape, you can blow their case right out of the water." "Wow!" said the unsuspected idiot, "Great idea! Where did you get yours?" Obviously, this dumb criminal didn't understand the meaning of entrapment. A man who had been cooking cocaine for nearly 30 years had cooked up a batch that went totally wrong; the powdered cocaine turned red. Being concerned for his own welfare as well as that of the public, he took the suspicious concoction to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation crime lab for analysis. After four separate tests, the substance proved to be cocaine, and the man was arrested for possession. He opted to serve as his own laywer in what to him seemed a ridiculous trial. "Had I known I was going to be arrested, I wouldn't have taken it to the lab. But if kids get ahold of something like this, it might hurt them or poison them. I took it over there to have it tested to see if it had been cut or mixed with any dangerous substances." He claimed if something had been wrong with the cocaine, he could have warned the public. He said he used to have his cocaine tested in New York. "What's the use of having a crime lab if a person can't take anything over there? I'm not a habitual user, I use cocaine for my arthritis. It's a waste of the taxpayer's money and time for this to go court. The grand jury shouldn't even have bothered." "I do not think a violation of the cocaine law is a waste of time," said the district attorney. And neither did the jury; it took just seven minutes to return a guilty verdict for this 'considerate-to-the-public-welfare' gentleman.
Drug Enforcement Agencies were involved in a raid on a drug house that was doing business in marijuana sales. They were dressed in black fatigues with 'Narcotics Agent' stenciled on the back. Local uniformed officers in marked police cruisers also took part in the raid. The original suspect was easily apprehended and agents were finishing up at the scene when two long haired individuals pulled up, got out of a pickup, and walked past the police cruisers parked in the driveway. "Hey man,," said one of the men, "he still selling pot?" What do ya do?! One officer looked at his partner and back at the guy. "Yeah, he is. Just go around and knock on the back door." The two men nodded and walked to the back door while the officer radioed the officers still inside the house that they had customers at the back door. When a plainsclothes officer answered the door, the guy asked where the old owner was. The officer explained that the owner had stepped out but he would help them. They requested a 50-dollar bag of marijuana, so the officer was happy to fulfill his request. The two customers thanked the officer for his generosity and walked back past the narcotics agents to their pickup. Before they got in, the agents arrested them and reconfiscated the dope just as another prospective customer pulled up. Deciding this was too easy, they hid the police cars, and impounded all the vehicles to the backyard. By the time the drug bust was over, they made fourteen more sales and arrests. When we come back, we'll read about an unusual case that came to the attention of the Supreme Court. Law enforcement officers were under authority of a search warrant to search the defendant's house and area for illegal drugs. As they were collecting evidence, they saw a purse on the kitchen cabinet, which turned out to be the defendant's girlfriend's purse. The officers told the woman she would have to empty the contents for them to look through. She was happy to oblige the officers, but upon dumping the contents, a large quantity and variety of controlled substances spilled out. Before the officers could say anything, the female companion yelled at the defendant to come into the kitchen and get his 'stuff'. The defendant immediately claimed ownership to some of the controlled substances. The Court found that the search was legal.
Some of the stranget stories come from around the nation. Here are a few. In South Dakota, three inmates planned to escape and kill three federal judges. But their plans were foiled because they sent letters to each of the judges and the Secret Service detailing their plans and even signed their names to the letters. A Pennsylvania woman devised a deadly way to spend her income tax refund. Police say she paid a hit man to kill her husband's lover. She had paid a friend's 17-year-old stepson to kill the woman, but he blew the whole $2,000 on motels and parties. When he told her the money was gone, she was so upset that she called a mental health hotline and confessed the whole plot. The counselor called the police. We all want to keep drunk drivers off the street. Here are a couple of stories about drunk drivers who ended up on the 'wrong end of the bottle'. One night an officer stopped a car for a minor traffic violation. She had pulled her cruiser behind that vehicle and left her red lights on (at night, remember). The red lights should have been quite visable, but while the officer was writing the ticket for the first violation, she heard a commotion behind her. She moved just in time to avoid being struck by the car that slammed into her police car. The occupant of that car was definitely 'over the limit', because when the officer asked if he'd seen the lights flashing on the police car, he replied, "yeah, after I hit it." A drunk man was involved in a hit-and-run, and did just that, he ran. He got out of his car, stumbled to the next intersection and flagged down a car at the stoplight. "I've been in an accidentally, I need somebody to take me home." The driver of the car told him to get in. After a few fumbles, the drunk man got the car door opened and climbed in beside the good samaritan. Even though he was drunk, he swore the driver had made a U-turn. "Hey man, what are you doing?" The undercover cop reached under the seat and pulled out his ID and badge. Guess his mother never told him about asking strangers for a ride. An officer and his partner stopped a car with a temporary license plate on it in a known drug traffic area. Upon closer examination, the officers noticed that the tag had been altered from the original date 2-17-95. It looked quite convincing except for one major flaw, the changed date was 2-37-95.
Before we end tonight's show, we have a special report from A.P. out of Florida. A Florida sheriff's department had set up a fake pawnshop that bought stolen goods, and videotaped all the transactions for several months, then shut down having arrested 30 to 40 people. The media was having a feeding frenzy with non-stop coverage because of the excellent audio and video. The operation recovered everything from silverware to an eighteen wheeler. About a week after the pawnshop sting had been closed, sheriff's department personnel went to unload their equipment and dismantle the operation. They arrived in police cruisers, a huge truck with the name of the local jail printed on the side of it, guards, prison trustees, and plainsclothes deputies were there too. When they pulled up to the 'pawnshop', there was a man setting on the front steps. He looked at the entourage, recognized one of undercover agents who had worked the operation, and signaled for him to come over. The agent went over and asked "What's up?" "Where've you been?" the man asked. "We've been around. Why?" The man pulled three stolen Social Security checks out of his pocket and told the agent he would sell them to him for ten cents on the dollar. The man was immediately handcuffed. But the officer couldn't resist asking him the question, "Didn't you recognize the police units and the security guards and the truck with COUNTY JAIL on the side?" "Well, yeah," he said, "But I just figured you all had stolen the truck and was bringing it down here to sell."