The Blotter

Bizarre crimes from Tampa police reports

DON'T SAY I DIDN'T WARN YOU: At 5:30 a.m. on Nov. 16, a woman was smoking a cigarette while sitting in her Dodge Neon in the parking lot of the Econo Lodge on Busch Boulevard in Tampa. A man approached and said, "She shouldn't be sitting in her car because it's dangerous out there." He then walked off, only to return a few moments later, again saying she should not be sitting in the parking lot alone. He then left again and a different man approached, except this guy was not quite as friendly. Rather then issue warnings, this guy climbed in the car and struck the woman in the face and head before dragging her from the vehicle and taking her keys. The struggle continued until "the victim's friends emerged from the motel room and scared off the suspect." He fled into a waiting getaway car, driven by (who else?) the man who had warned the victim twice that she was in danger.

WELCOME TO TAMPA: I had a lot of shit jobs before I got this cushy gig, but I never endured anything quite like this. Two young men (one 19 years old, the other 23) traveled to Tampa from Ohio in the latest stop on a multi-state journey selling magazine subscriptions. The company they worked for dropped them off "in the area of East Tampa" and told them to go to work. The two salesmen canvassed the neighborhood, closing some deals before spotting some potential customers near the corner of 25th Avenue and 34th Street. The incident log does not go into detail on the sales pitch, but it does reveal that the two men need some work on their close. Per the report: "When the victims pulled out their subscription books the suspects pulled out a gun and took the victim's booklets and approximately $185.00 in cash." Unfortunately, the suspects were not apprehended.

DOPE BUST: In other cases, the police work just kind of does itself. Two Tampa cops pulled over a car with an improper tag. Per the report: "Upon coming into contact with the driver, the officers observed a baggie of marijuana on the driver's lap and a baggie of marijuana on the center console." Hey, at least he hid the cocaine. (The cops found 15.2 grams of it under the driver's seat.)

From the files of the T.P.D.