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The Blotter: Scent redemption

In Lakewood Heights, an Atlanta police sergeant saw a brand-new Mustang GT stopped at a red light. “For unknown reasons, the Mustang aggressively accelerated south when the traffic light turned to green,” the sergeant noted. Yep, the alleged speed demon zipped away in front of a sergeant sitting in a fully marked squad car. Sarge hit the gas and the chase was on. “I accelerated with the vehicle reaching a speed of 96 mph ... before activating the emergency equipment of my patrol, signaling the Mustang to stop,” the sergeant noted.

He got out of squad car and chatted with the driver, a 41-year-old man, who had an unusual explanation for his actions. “He advised that he was aware of [the speed] and that he thought I was following him,” the sergeant noted.

Of course, the driver was technically correct. The sergeant was following him — for speeding. The sergeant continued: “[The driver’s] mannerisms were very nervous and awkward, much like a drunk driver, yet all I could smell in the vehicle was the ‘new car’ smell.”

He charged the 41-year-old man with reckless driving, handcuffed him, and escorted him to the squad car. “While completing [the] required paperwork in my squad [car], I began to detect the odor of alcoholic beverage emanating from arrestee’s person,” the sergeant noted. “With arrestee already being in custody for the traffic violation, I decided to forgo pursuing a DUI investigation and subsequent charges.”

This is the first time in Blotter history that a “new car” smell may have saved a driver from a DUI charge. Historic, indeed. The driver’s shiny new Mustang was impounded.

Deliberate or dumb?

A cop recently strolled into a corner store in Westview. The clerk “asked me if I could do something about Shorty Bob,” the cop noted. Apparently, the cop was very familiar with Shorty Bob’s reputation as a neighborhood troublemaker who’d been banned from the food store and several other neighborhood haunts. The clerk said Shorty Bob was constantly coming in and out of the store and harassing him, along with other customers. The clerk said he repeatedly ordered Shorty Bob to get out, but Shorty Bob just stood there and argued. The cop asked for Shorty Bob’s whereabouts. The clerk pointed across the street to the 59-year-old man.

Apparently, Shorty Bob saw the cop and clerk chatting and made an interesting move. According to the officer’s notes, Shorty Bob “walked back across the street, into the store, right up to me, and said, ‘Officer, let me get 50 cents.’” The cop arrested Shorty Bob for trespassing inside a store that he was banned from long ago. Shorty Bob went to jail.

Fashion police

At a house in the Joyland neighborhood, a cop responded to a call about a possible burglary involving two suspects. When the officer arrived at the scene, he noticed “a shovel that may have been used to enter the house.” The shovel was below a wide-open window. The officer continued to the rear of the house where he found a man wearing blue jeans and a black jacket. “The jeans were brightly stone washed,” the cop noted. The suspect ran into the woods. The cop looked to his left and saw the second suspect “holding a black flat-screen television with both hands.” The cop pointed his gun and ordered the man onto the ground. The cop took him to jail and ordered a police search in the woods for the other suspect in “brightly stone washed” jeans. No luck — the stone-washed suspect got way.

Not-so-smarty pants

In Downtown, a man strolled by Peachtree Plaza while “eating from a paper bowl with a plastic spoon,” a cop noted. Upon finishing his food, the man “threw the bowl and spoon down on the city sidewalk, and kept walking.”

Two cops stopped the man for a chat. The man explained that he was finished with his food and he was going to come back later to pick up his trash. The cops arrested the man for littering and searched his clothes. “He kept turning away ... and didn’t seem to want me to check his right front pocket,” the cop noted. “A search of the pocket turned up a small baggie of powder cocaine.” The man said the cocaine did not belong to him. “[The man] stated the pants were not his, and he just found them,” the cop noted. “He claimed all the other property on the pants were his, just not the cocaine.” The 38-year-old man went to jail for littering and drug possession charges.

Rookie jitters

On Howell Mill Road a man with missing front teeth slung a black leather computer bag over his shoulder, put on dark sunglasses and a black baseball cap, strolled into a grocery store, and allegedly tried to steal two flashlights worth $15. A security guard stopped the man, who handed over the flashlights and sprinted away. Moments later, a cop found him in a parking lot and arrested him for shoplifting. When cops searched him, the alleged flashlight thief became nervous and lost control of a bodily function: “He urinated on himself,” the cop noted.

Items in the Blotter are taken from actual Atlanta police reports. The Blotter Diva compiles them and puts them into her own words.

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