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The Blotter 

HOP ON POP: Some unknown troublemakers recently accosted an unsuspecting Coke machine at an apartment complex, knocked it on its side and used a foreign object to pry it open and remove the money box.

SMILE, YOU'RE BUSTED: A cashier at a local department store was caught "free-bagging" several items of clothing for a customer/accomplice. After charging the customer for two items and placing them in a bag, she then stuffed three more items -- totaling about $100 -- into the same bag without ringing them up, after which the customer promptly left. This sordid affair was captured on the store's surveillance camera.

SCHOOL DAZE: Police were summoned to a Charlotte alternative school to find a young man acting "extremely belligerent" including "cursing loudly and disrupting the campus." The cantankerous kid refused to leave, so he was placed under arrest, during which time he threatened the police with bodily harm. He was ultimately charged with disorderly conduct, trespassing, resisting arrest and communicating threats.

BAD MECHANIC: In working out the details of a car transaction, a man agreed to let his friend -- and potential car customer -- take his car to the house of a third man, who was supposed to perform some mechanical work. Instead, the would-be mechanic drove away in the car without permission and hasn't been seen since.

HIT AND RUN AND S.O.L.: A drunken driver was spotted striking a parked car on Tryon St., getting out of his car, looking around for witnesses (apparently he didn't see the guy standing across the street), then leaving the scene. The witness flagged down a nearby deputy, who caught up with the lunkhead, who was attempting to change his front right tire. The man was charged with DWI, driving without a license, and hit and run. He caused an estimated $1200 damage to the car he struck.

THREATS OF THE WEEK: Here's a small sample of threats made over the phone as reported to Charlotte police: One suspect called the victim both at work and on her cell phone saying "I'll kick your butt," and "I'll kill your baby." In another case a woman reported that her ex-boyfriend called her home seven times in a four-hour span and repeatedly said "fuck you" and "eat shit." Finally, a woman called police after she heard her son in a taped conversation say, "I want my mother mugged." The woman reports that her son is out of control and has been associating with individuals with bad reputations.

Blotter items are chosen from the files of the Charlotte Police Department.

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