Cops in Phoenix, Ariz., just shook their heads and wondered if it was somethin' in the water. They had just learned that over a dozen, presumably sane, citizens had unwittingly volunteered to help a 14-year-old boy steal a car.
"It is incredible that an entire neighborhood would participate in this comedy of errors," police Sergeant Dave Norton told reporters. "Nobody asked why a 14-year-old is out with a vehicle and doesn't know how to drive it. His looks and size should've made bells and whistles go off in people's minds."
The unnamed kid was having serious problems working the manual transmission of the freshly stolen car, and he kept stalling the vehicle, doin' the old "jerkin' and burpin'" routine. Police said that at least 15 people offered to help, pushing the car, giving him tips on operating the clutch and keeping his RPMs high enough to avoid stalling. Then, one helpful lady, Margarita Wood, actually climbed in the car with him and served as his driving instructor.
Fortunately, somebody with an IQ over 10/40 motor oil saw this moronic mess and called 911. Margarita was still in the car with her little auto-thief pal when officers stopped 'em and ended the driving lesson. Ms. Wood was "talked to" and released. The kid was turned over to his grandmother. That's the part we really would like the details on.
Three Years Will Do
We've always admired a man with a sound plan and Timothy J. Bowers had a good one. Faced with the inability to find a decent job to support himself, the 62-year-old checked and made sure a felony record would not prevent him from collecting Social Security benefits when he turned 65. He then reviewed sentences given out for non-violent crimes involving no deaths, injuries or use of firearms--and then he robbed a Columbus, Ohio, bank. All he really wanted was a roof overhead and meals until his 65th birthday.
Bowers simply handed the teller a note announcing a robbery and demanding cash in an envelope. The teller complied, forkin' over four $20 bills and then hitting the silent alarm button. But before the robbery-response apparatus could even kick in, Timothy sauntered over to a uniformed security guard in the lobby, handed him the money and...