Imp­ish mog in the dog box

Pil­fer­ing paws shame own­ers

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By MATTHEW DAL­LAS

It was the purr-fect crime. Well, al­most.

For a month Maxwell, a sup­pos­edly ‘‘run-of-the-mill’’ moggy, has run amok in Tirowhanga Rd, Pare­mata, in­vad­ing nearby homes and leav­ing his own­ers, the Janes fam­ily, a lit­tle red-faced.

The prover­bial cat bur­glar, one-yearold Maxwell has been pil­fer­ing up to six items each night from houses in the neigh­bour­hood, from shoes and blan­kets to a child’s wet­suit and a pair of py­ja­mas.

He might have got away with it too – there be­ing no wit­nesses, no prints, and no ap­par­ent mo­ti­va­tion be­yond a kit­ten’s pluck – were it not for a pussy­cat’s pride. Max pa­raded his loot in and around the Janes’ front door and, upon re­turn from each of his raids, would of­fer a haughty meow for all the fam­ily to hear.

‘‘It’s lucky we have a good re­la­tion­ship with the whole street,’’ owner He­len Janes said, ‘‘I was able to send them all an email ex­plain­ing what’s been hap­pen­ing.’’

‘‘My hus­band and I wake up ev­ery morn­ing to see what gifts he has left strewn down the hall­way and out the door. We have to put the lost, or should I say stolen, prop­erty out on our drive­way for the neigh­bours to col­lect.’’

It’s as­sumed Maxwell has tar­geted houses with cat doors and open win­dows, but how the diminu­tive fe­line man­aged to drag a large blan­ket – re­moved from a neigh­bour’s couch – out one cat-flap, down the street and through an­other, has Ms Janes scratch­ing her head.

And no­body knows why Maxwell sud­denly turned to a life of crime. Too many Slinky Malinki books per­haps?

‘‘I Googled it, it does hap­pen, but it’s not that com­mon.’’

Ms Janes said on one oc­ca­sion Maxwell took the sheets from a neigh­bour’s wash­ing pile and pushed them against a door, trap­ping the oc­cu­pant in­side a room.

‘‘She had to knock on the door for her hus­band to let her through.’’

One in­con­ve­nient act of thiev­ery meant a per­plexed cus­toms of­fi­cer had to go to work with­out part of her uni­form, a large vest Maxwell had taken a fancy to. Alas, the nightly ad­ven­tures ended last Thurs­day, when the fam­ily put Maxwell on lock­down.

‘‘ We’re go­ing to shut the cat door tonight. It’s get­ting a bit em­bar­rass­ing,’’ Ms Janes said.

Who me? Fe­line felon Maxwell has been grounded fol­low­ing a month-long crime spree.

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