Editor’s note: Compiled from reports to Tacoma Police.
Sept. 25: The man just wanted to sing. What was the song? He didn’t say. Maybe it was “My Way.”
He’d drained two pitchers of Coors Light. It was after midnight, and he’d been rolling strikes and spares at a bowling alley in the 6300 block of Sixth Avenue.
He was 25, feeling musical. He was 6 feet 5, checking in at 250 pounds, with blond hair and a full beard.
He told one of the alley clerks he wanted to sing karaoke over the PA system. The clerk said he couldn’t do that. The man’s mood darkened. He picked up a table and threw it. Another customer tried to cool him down. The man spat a racial slur, kicked the glass door at the entrance, shattered the pane and walked out. The clerk called police and provided the license number of the man’s car, a white 1999 Ford Escort.
Two officers drove to the man’s home in the 400 block of South G Street and waited. The man soon arrived, driving the Escort. Another officer brought the clerk to the scene. She identified the man.
He was unsteady. His eyes were bloodshot. He slurred his words. He told officers he got mad when he couldn’t sing.
“It pissed me off a little,” he said. “It infuriated me, so I left.”
He said he didn’t remember breaking anything. Did he have a buzz?
Maybe, the man admitted. He’d had one pitcher of beer, he said. Rum and cola before that, maybe two. He said he left because he wanted to avoid a situation.
The slur? Yeah. The broken table? He didn’t remember.
“It broke; it’s not my fault,” he said.
Officers ran a breath-alcohol test. The man blew 0.17 on the first run, 0.16 on the second. He was booked into the Pierce County jail on suspicion of malicious mischief and drunken driving.
Oct. 2: The Tacoma woman believed the computer. The computer lied.
She was 42. She told a police officer her son had been using the computer when it locked up. The screen blared a message from the FBI. The message said the computer was being used for criminal activity. For a $200 fee, it could be unlocked – go to a convenience store, buy a prepaid cash card with a code, and enter the code on the computer screen.
The woman did it. She entered the code. The screen disappeared, along with her money.
The officer told the woman the threatening screen was a virus; the FBI didn’t take anonymous payments from convenience-store cards. The report was filed under fraud.
Sept. 21: The bait was something for nothing. It turned out to be nothing for something.
The 24-year-old Tacoma man thought he was scoring a deal when he agreed to buy three prepaid hardware-store gift cards. The seller offered the deal through a Craigslist ad and agreed to meet the buyer in a parking lot near Tacoma Mall.
The seller said the three cards carried a balance of $390. The buyer was no fool; he’d called the store in advance to confirm the balance on the cards before he bought them.
The buyer paid the seller and found himself on the short end. His precautions were too slow. The seller had drained the cards before the meeting.
The buyer figured it out and called police. Before the officer arrived, the seller sent text messages, offering to sell more cards. The officer couldn’t trace the seller’s phone number, and filed the report under fraud.
Sept. 26: It’s a little-known fact that sheets of plywood weigh about as much as flat-screen TVs. Cover them in cardboard boxes, and the difference is minimal.
The 41-year-old Tacoma man learned that lesson the hard way. He and his wife had stopped for lunch at a restaurant in the 6400 block of South Tacoma Way.
In the parking lot, three clean-cut young men wearing electronics-store name tags said they were selling TVs at a discount price: $350 each. The merchandise was stacked in flat boxes.
The man talked to his wife. He thought it looked like a great deal. He didn’t peek inside the boxes. He decided to buy two TVs. The sellers gave him an even better deal, knocking $100 off the price.
The man took the TVs home, opened them up and found sheets of plywood. He called police and gave them the license number of the car the three men had been driving. The officer filed the report under theft and fraud.
Sean Robinson: 253-597-8486