COPS CORNER: Local man scares off intruder
Local man scares off intruder
Attempted burglary: A 20-year-old man told Sheriff's Office deputies that walked into his kitchen, looked out the rear window and saw an unfamiliar man on his back patio looking around the corner of the house. The 20-year-old ran into his room and got a .22 caliber rifle, ran out the back door and yelled at the man, who ran out the screen door and then toward the front of the house. The 20-year-old told a deputy he heard a car accelerate, then ran to the side of the house and saw an older model, dark green car car with no hubcaps speeding away. There were two men in the front seat, and another — the man the 20-year-old believed was the one who'd entered the property — in the rear. The deputy checked the patio and found a cut in the screen door. The intruder, the deputy wrote in a report, had sliced the screen above the latch and then reached through to unlock it. Nothing was stolen.
Making themselves right at home
6:05 p.m. First block of Secretary Trail
Burglary: A realtor called the Sheriff''s Office after realizing that there were four people living in a home the realtor was handling that was supposed to be vacant. The house had been unoccupied for about four years. A deputy checking the home spoke to a 20-year-old at the home who said he had a lease and had found the house listed on Craigslist. But the deputy recognized the young man, who "had previously entered vacant properties and provided leases which were later proven to be fake," according to the deputy's report. The man admitted to deputies that he'd printed the lease — the same one he'd used before — on the internet. He'd let himself into the home through an unlocked rear slider, then change the locks and removed a "for sale" sign, according to the report. He was arrested and charged with burglary and petit theft. The other people in the house weren't arrested at the time because there was insufficient probable cause, the deputy wrote in the report.
6:31 a.m. 100 block of Brunswick Lane
Delayed residential burglary: A thief broke in to a 34-year-old man's screened lanai and stole a red torch lighter, two packs of cigarettes and a hookah, a water pipe used to smoke flavored tobacco and common in the Middle East. The hookah was worth about $300. The 34-year-old told a deputy that the theft must have happened between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. that morning. The thief had sliced a hole in the lanai's screen door to get in. The home itself was left unlocked, but the thief didn't enter it, the deputy wrote in a report, and no one in the neighborhood said they saw anything suspicious that night.
Bar customers get watered down experience
8:20 p.m. 100 block of Palm Harbor Parkway
Disturbance: Customers sitting outside a local bar got wet despite a dry sky the evening of Sept. 13 when a 19-year-old in an apartment above the bar began throwing items and dumping water on them from the balcony above. When he was told to stop, he came downstairs and argued with customers, and the bar's owner called police, the owner told deputies. The young man explained things differently to a deputy. He admitted that he had thrown water over the balcony from the apartment where he was visiting a friend. But, he said, when he realized he'd hit people, he came downstairs to apologize, and the patrons taunted him and tried to start a fight. The deputy wrote in a report that the disturbance "was strictly verbal and did not arise to any criminal activity occurring." The 19-year-old was told to stay out of the bar.