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Police Beat

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June 16

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(2009-282883) 7:13 a.m.: Let's begin this week with a brief rumination on things that should be crimes, but aren't. For instance, I have to write this column even though I'm theoretically on vacation, because hell if this half-page is gonna write itself. Also there's the small matter of state-sanctioned torture, but we'll leave that for some other column.

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Meanwhile, here's something that should be a capital crime: I had a 2:30 p.m. doctor's appointment. So I left work, drove down I-4 on the hottest day of the year in a car with a broken air conditioner to Longwood, and found that my doctor was on vacation and whoops, somebody forgot to call me so would I mind coming back in a few weeks, though I'll have to wait a little while longer than usual because they're backed up and will be squeezing me in. This is the same doctor's office where if you show up more than 15 minutes late to your appointment, you have to reschedule and pay a fine; if you show up on time, you'll be waiting 90 minutes with a collection of crappy magazines. Can we get health-care reform that fixes that, please?

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Onward.

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Someone broke into an apartment – "no signs of force or damage" – and took the victim's cash, driver's license and car keys. Unfortunately for our villain, the keys were to a minivan, which was stolen, probably reluctantly.

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(2009-282963) 8:27 a.m.: Someone stole a patio set from a porch.

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(2009-283260) 12:17 p.m.: Fire at a vacant house deemed suspicious.

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(2009-283535) 3:11 p.m.: This could have ended badly: "The victim heard a knock on the back door of the apartment. When he opened it, an unknown black male holding a handgun stepped inside and grabbed the victim by the arm. The victim began to yell to his roommate in another room for help, at which time the suspect fled out the back door in an unknown direction."

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(2009-283947) 7:27 p.m.: "Unknown person removed a clothing rack from the covered porch."

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(2009-284109) 8:50 p.m.: Passed along without comment: "The suspect gained entry to the storage room by kicking open the door. The suspect attempted to remove a leaf blower but was confronted by the complainant and was threatened with an umbrella, at which time the suspect left the leaf blower and fled the area on foot."

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(2009-284190) 10:01 p.m.: Home burglary: The bad guy pried off window bars to get in and steal a computer monitor, though not the computer itself.

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(2009-284295) 11:47 p.m.: If you force yourself into a guy's car, choke him, then order him to take money out of an ATM, you might not want to let him drive to a well-populated bar crawling with off-duty cops. Someone might get suspicious. On the other hand, our suspects did escape with the guy's cell phone, wallet and iPod.

June 17

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(2009-284476) 2:38 a.m.: Oh, look. Another residential burglary. This gig's not getting monotonous at all.

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(2009-284674) 7:27 a.m.: A thoroughly uninformative report from Officer Lopez. Something about a car burglary, or maybe four of them. I really can't tell.

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(2009-284701) 7:48 a.m.: What's this? Another residential burglary? Don't act so surprised.

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(2009-284805) 9:11 a.m.: Hey, here's one more.

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(2009-285237) 1:53 p.m.: "Under my seat" is not a good answer to that all-important question, "Where should you stash your illegal handgun so the cops won't find it?"

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(2009-286061) 11:01 p.m.: A man walked into a Hess station, implied that he had a gun, nabbed some cash and fled in a Dodge Neon. Poor bastard, having to drive a Neon.

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(2009-286071) 11:13 p.m.: This young man stole a completely inconspicuous gold Chrysler convertible.

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(2009-286092) 11:27 p.m.: A Pine Hills traffic stop turned up a 27-year-old who wasn't supposed to have a handgun.

June 18

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(2009-286228) 1:16 a.m.: If you use a box-cutter to steal someone's money, does that make you a terrorist?

June 19

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(2009-288280) 4:38 a.m.: So, this would be an example of how not to pick up chicks: Our suspect, a 55-year-old cabdriver, picked up a 21-year-old woman near the I-4 on-ramp at Michigan Avenue, then "started to touch the victim on the face, arm and breast. The victim told him to stop. Driver then took the victim down Rio Grande, where he touched her in her vaginal area. He then dropped her off at home, and she then called the police."

; jbillman@orlandoweekly.com

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