Hey, That’s One Scary Little Penguin, Lady!

When the first calls came in, deputies in Yavapai County, Ariz., thought they were responding to some kind of terrorist incident. A young woman had walked into a Chevron Station on Highway 69 holding a bulky object under her sweater and threatening to explode her bomb if the clerk didn’t fork over all the cash, quick. The clerk wasn’t buying the story without seeing some kinda recognizable explosive device, though.

Following a brief exchange of “Gimme the money or I’ll set it off!” and “Yeah? First show me the bomb, lady!” the crime sorta lost momentum and the downcast terrorist shuffled out. Deputies found Andri Jeffers a block away, hugging her “bomb” — a stuffed penguin.

My advice: Never give up your money for a plushy penguin. Insist on, at the very least, a Zombie Clown doll.

You Just Gotta Look In The Right Place

The instant Ambre Boroughs lifted her suitcase off the conveyor belt at the airport in Charleston, S.C., she knew something was wrong. It was too light. Sure enough, her new HP 9000 laptop computer was gone.

She went through the usual not-our-fault, you’re-outta-luck dance with the airline, and TSA was clueless. All they could tell her was that her computer was in the suitcase at Chicago’s Midway airport when they passed it along to baggage handlers. She knew that already. If anything was gonna be done, it would have to be done by her. So, she asked herself, where’s the first place to look for salable stolen goods? Craigslist, of course!

Ambre typed in “HP 9000,” centered her search in the Chicago area, and it took her, oh, several minutes to find a nice color photo of her laptop, bearing a distinctive logo sticker from her favorite band, which she had placed on it before her trip. Her call to the seller was immediately answered, and the dude said he had many laptops for sale.

Ambre made an appointment to pick it up, but since it would be such a long trip from Charleston to Chicago, she called the police department and asked if they would stand in for her. They graciously agreed, retrieving her computer and a truckload of other goodies logged as “removed from checked luggage of ticketed passengers on Southwest Airlines at Midway” — plus picked up three young “entrepreneurs.”

Sometimes the best detective work is done by amateurs, folks.

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