Wacky police blotter
From the crimes to the ridiculous
Crime, no wants it in their backyard but everyone seems to want it in their newsfeed.
Law-breakers always draw big audiences to our news pages, whether print or online.
While there is a lot of interest in serious crimes - murders, sexual assaults, etc. - there is also a huge appetite for unusual crimes, the kind that make you laugh, go “huh,” or text “WTF” to a buddy.
This year, TC Media publications across Atlantic Canada covered some doozies that would prompt such reactions.
Below are a few.
A wanted man of his word
Brandon Melbourne became a wanted man in September after being a no-show for some court dates. The Royal Newfoundland Constabulary issued five arrest warrants and posted it on Facebook.
Some Facebookers thought Melbourne looked like the suspect in a recent bank heist.
Melbourne took exception, posting that he doesn’t look like the bank robber and he wouldn’t “robb” anybody.
To that, the RNC replied: “In the meantime... we have five warrants we would like to discuss with you. Please get in touch Brandon.”
Melbourne promised to turn himself in around 9 p.m.
“Brandon, we appreciate you coming forward call us when you’re ready - we’ll pick you up,” the RNC replied.
Melbourne said he had a ride, and had important things to do first.
“I’m a man of my word so I’ll see you tonight.”
Melbourne kept his promise, turning himself in around 9:20 p.m.
Safety not always first
A P.E.I. man known as “Mr. Safety” at his local shooting range was fined $1,250 after the police responded to him firing a shotgun to scare a neighbour’s dog.
James A. Smith, 48, received the fine after pleading guilty to possessing a prohibited weapon and careless storage of a firearm.
A neighbour in Nine Mile Creek called 911 Sept. 3 to report Smith shooting at his dog.
When Smith heard about the call, he phoned 911 to say his gun had a trigger lock on it, that it was on his kitchen table and that he would be sitting outside waiting for police.
Police seized 18 firearms, 12 boxes of ammunition, bows, arrows and two small bags of what appeared to be marijuana.
Police also found a prohibited butterfly knife.
Smith had all required li- cences.
Along with the fine and an order to forfeit the seized items, Smith will be under a weapons ban for eight years.
Card thief steals trust
The bride figures culprits sank to a new low in New Waterford, N.S., when they stole cards from a wedding reception.
“Hearing what happened, you just feel sick to your stomach, really,” said Ashley DeGiobbiLynk.
She married Lenny Lynk on July 23 and held a reception at the Army Navy Airforce Club in New Waterford.
A week later they discovered someone lifted some wedding cards from their reception.
Ten were found opened and discarded the day after the reception and contacted police.
The newlyweds had no way of knowing how many cards were taken.
DeGiobbi-Lynk said they felt disgusted.
“We don’t have any idea what happened but it’s an awful feeling knowing someone did this.”
Man datejacked in N.L.
It started out like any other first date in the 21st century: Man meets woman online and they agree to meet.
But a 26-year-old man from Winterton, N.L., got more than he desired in August when he met up with a 30-year-old woman from nearby Carbonear.
They drove to a park and things went awry.
Allegedly, a trio of men approached the vehicle brandishing a weapon. They took the man’s money and belongings. They also stole his car. The man managed to get away and report the incident to police around 1 a.m. He was not injured. “He was shaken and he was upset,” the RCMP said. “He feared for her safety.”
The female was also believed to be a victim, but that changed as the man kept receiving text messages asking for money as he spoke to police.
“We were pinging the cellphone because texts were coming back and forth,” said Hillier.
Police used that info to locate the car a short while later.
“Two individuals were hiding in the woods, two were not there and the weapon used was there,” said Hillier.
Four people were arrested in connection to the incident - the woman, an 18-year-old man, a 33-year-old man and a 15-yearold youth.
Hoppy mountain high
A break-in at a farm didn’t get three people the desired high after they allegedly mistook hops for marijuana.
A farmer in Alexandra, P.E.I., called to report a break-in after he saw three people near his buildings.
A woman and two men were arrested.
They allegedly caused extensive damage to a hops crop packaged for shipping.
They told police they thought there was marijuana growing on the farm.
Hops are used in beer brewing.
Impaired by drink and phone
Driving impaired and trying to text ended badly for a Souris, P.E.I., woman.
Candice Ann Janzen, 28, got seven days in jail after she drove her vehicle into a ditch while texting and driving under the influence.
Souris, P. E. I., police responded to a single-vehicle collision Oct. 10.
They found paramedics attending to Janzen, who said she had been driving and texting after drinking.
The judge told Janzen it was understandable how she ended up in the ditch.
“I guess the only good thing is you didn’t take anyone with you,” Chief Judge Nancy Orr said.
Janzen, 28, is also banned from driving for two years and fined a total of $1,300.
“Why two years?” Orr said of the ban. “It’s pretty obvious.”
A Facebook screenshot showing part of Brandon Melbourne’s exchange with the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary.
A trio of thieves tried to nab a little weed (left photo) at a local growing operation, only to find their intended booty was actually hops (right photo). Guess that must have been a downer.
Jenine Porter was also charged with extortion and robbery after a “datejacking” case near Carbonear, N.L.