Eatery places order with police: one drunk cook to go

Whose car is it, anyway?

South-West Review police reports Oct. 20, 2013

West St. Paul

Traffic stop
––  At least she wasn’t speeding: police received a report of a car driving along Butler Avenue Oct. 14 missing one of its front tires. An officer caught up with the three-wheeling 1995 Chevy Beretta and cited the driver for unsafe equipment. The vehicle was towed to impound; the officer gave the owner a ride to Perkins where she could meet up with her sister.

–– To be fair, the employee handbook probably doesn’t address this directly: the manager of a Chinese restaurant on the 1200 block of Robert St. called police during the dinner rush Oct. 9 to ask for help with a drunken employee. The manager said the employee (a recent hire) was not causing a disturbance except for the fact he was sprawled in the middle of the kitchen floor, seriously impeding the delivery of fried rice and General Tso’s chicken to diners. Officers picked up the fellow as “takeout” and delivered him to the detox unit.
–– Nearly the same scene was enacted in the 200 block of Bernard St., where a resident called police to report he’d found an intoxicated man who passed out on the ground near his home. When the man came to and stood up, the homeowner asked him if he was OK. The man replied, “Yeah –– are you OK?” before shuffling off down the street.

911 hangup
–– On Oct. 14, dispatchers received yet another emergency call from someone who’d just learned about the 911 system and wanted to make sure it really worked. Usually, such calls are from elementary-school students checking up on the veracity of their teachers, but this one was from an elderly woman just ensuring the 911 alert button on her phone put her in touch with the right people.

Disturbing the peace
–– Ever had your sobriety called into question? Here’s a great way to remove all doubts: a patron who was excused from a bar on the 400 block of Mendota Road Oct. 9 due to his high level of intoxication thought he could settle the score by throwing rocks at the building. Bar staff initially called police, but later said that the owner and bouncer had chased the culprit off into the weeds behind the building and no damage was found on the exterior.

Drug activity
–– Police were called to the 1100 block of Robert St. Oct. 11 on a report of group of smokers sitting outside a restaurant passing a pipe. The responding officer determined that the substance in the pipe wasn’t actually illegal, but encouraged the group to think about how such an activity might look to others before sending them on their way.

Suspicious activity
–– A cry for help can come in many forms: a groundskeeper at St. Croix Lutheran High School discovered a silver 1997 Chevy Tahoe firmly rooted in the mud along one of the school’s walking paths the morning Oct. 12. Police arrived and found the owner of the vehicle, who turned out to be (surprise!) intoxicated. He was transported to detox.

Harassing communications
–– A woman called police Oct. 12 to complain that a man had stared at her in a “mean way” while she was at a gas station on the 1800 block of Robert St., an hour and a half before she made the call. The woman added this was not the first time this has happened to her, and to date the police had never addressed the problem to her satisfaction.

Inver Grove Heights

–– “Free to a good home” isn’t as friendly as it sounds if the person giving goods away chooses the home: a man called police from the 6400 block of Delilah Ave. Oct. 1 to complain that someone had dumped assorted couches and chairs at a vacant rental property he owned. The man said he hadn’t found any witnesses, but he wanted the incident documented in case a suspect turns up later.

Civil assist
–– Some days you just can’t catch a break: an officer responded to an apartment on the 3100 block of 65th St. Sept. 30 on a report of a verbal dispute. Inside, he found a man upset with the woman who lived in the apartment because she agreed to sell him a car and took his $400 down payment, then turned around and sold the car to another woman. The other woman was disinclined to part with the vehicle now, however, since she had already paid for it and had the title in hand. The woman who sold the vehicle admitted she had sold the car twice, but only because the first buyer was slow coming up with the rest of the money and the second buyer had the cash up front. To add insult to injury, both the buyer who was stiffed and the overzealous seller were arrested at the scene because an ID check revealed each had outstanding warrants. Hopefully the $400 is refunded in time to pay for bail.

South St. Paul

Property damage
–– An inept car thief (or thieves) broke into a sales lot on the 700 block of Concord St. Oct. 11 and damaged windows and steering columns on nine vehicles in an unsuccessful campaign to steal a car. They did manage to remove several stereos and one DVD player. Surveillance video is pending.

–– It can take time to coax some people into frankness, but some find it a relief to declare themselves: police were called to the Central Square Community Center Oct. 14 after an employee there reported her wallet was stolen. The employee explained she’d set her wallet under a chair in one of the fitness rooms while she worked out, and when she went to retrieve it she found it was gone. The wallet was later found outside the center, about $100 lighter than when it went missing. Surveillance footage of the incident showed a man enter the room, drop his sweatshirt on top of the wallet and then scoop up the shirt and the wallet when he left. A supervisor at the center recognized the man and pulled up his profile (which revealed his membership had expired in April because he quit paying) and supplied the officer with his contact information. The officer then met with the man at his home and asked him about the theft, which he initially denied. When the officer informed the man he had him on video, he came clean about the incident and said he’d decided to steal the wallet “because I am stupid.” The man promised to pay back the money he’d stolen; in the meantime the officer cited him for theft and warned him about using the community center without a membership.

–– A man who owns a building on the 400 block of Fifth Ave. called police Oct. 11 after he found a disturbing note left by a tenant. The man said the tenant was behind on his rent and had agreed to move out by a set date, but in the meantime complained of numerous things that needed fixing in the apartment. The landlord ordered parts for the fixes and contacted the tenant when they arrived to let him know he’d be making the repairs; however, the next time he was in the building he found a sign on the tenant’s door that read “Final warning If I catch anyone in my home without my permission one more time you will Die –– 2nd amendment.” The landlord told police he couldn’t help but feel the message was directed at him and wanted it documented in case anything happened, but for now he said he would play it cool and hope the tenant moves out as agreed.

Warrant arrest
–– Keeping a low profile isn’t nearly as hard as some people make it look: an officer on a routine patrol Oct. 11 took notice when a vehicle pulled into a handicapped spot in the parking lot of a liquor store on the 1100 block of Southview Blvd. The officer approached the vehicle and spoke with a female passenger, who said she hadn’t realized it was a handicapped spot and would see to it that the car was moved immediately. While they were talking, the driver came out of the store and immediately became fidgety when he noticed a police officer standing next to his vehicle. The officer made contact with the man, and, based on his jumpy nerves, decided to check his name in the database. There he found a warrant out of Hennepin County for public urination; the man was arrested at the scene and taken to Dakota County Jail.

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