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Woman's friend not so friendly when it comes to ID theft

On the Beat is an occasional reporting of various crimes and complaints confronted by law enforcement personnel in Newton County in the course of their duties. It is compiled by News Editor Barbara Knowles, who can be reached at barbara.knowles@newtoncitizen.com.

Choose your friends wisely

A woman notified the Covington Police Department that she needed an officer's assistance to help her find her stolen wallet. It seems she was riding in a Chevrolet Tahoe with a friend who had borrowed the vehicle from a third party. Inside her wallet were various forms of identification, including a debit card and an EBT card. The woman said she didn't realize her wallet was missing until the friend called and asked her for her Social Security card number. "This struck (the victim) as odd," the report states.

She then learned the friend was apparently attempting to open an account in the victim's name at Target without permission. The victim confronted the woman and she said she had the wallet and would return it if she would come to the woman's home to pick it up.

While en route to get the wallet, the supposed friend called her back to say the owner of the car had found the wallet in the car, didn't know who it belonged to, so he threw it away in the woods near his home.

The officer asked the woman why she would attempt to open an account in someone else's name and she replied, "I always fill out applications for my friends."

He asked the car owner why he threw the wallet away and he replied, "I did not know who the wallet belonged to and I did not want to get into any trouble, so I threw it in the woods." He said he'd try to locate it the next morning as it was dark while the officer was talking to him. The officer attempted to locate the wallet and failed.

The owner of the wallet was advised to file a report for identity theft and to cancel her debit card.

Fresh veggies

A woman was arrested by CPD officers at Wal-Mart for attempting to steal $28.42 worth of produce by stuffing it into her purse.

Bored with the process

A woman was stopped by Wal-Mart loss prevention officers for attempting to steal a pack of socks, two pairs of jeans and a man's wallet valued at $59.56. She was escorted into the manager's office to await the arrival of the police. She was talking on her cell phone when CPD officers arrived on the scene and ignored them when they attempted to question her. "If y'all gonna take me to jail, then I wish y'all would just do it," she said. Her wish was granted.

Runway theft

A city of Covington employee reported that someone had stolen seven globes and damaged two stands at the end of runway 28 at the Covington Municipal Airport.

Long gone

A woman from India notified the Newton County Sheriff's Office that she had misplaced her passport. She said she'd last seen it in 2002.

Mysterious moving trash

A resident notified the NCSO that someone had dumped two white bags of trash on his front lawn. The deputy who answered the call donned rubber gloves and sorted through the trash until he located a piece of mail with an address on it, as well as school work from a Clements Middle School student. The deputy drove to that address and spoke a male member of the household, who admitted to having a younger brother who is a student at Clements, but said he had no earthly idea how the trash could have gotten to the yard where it was found. He said he put it in a Newton County Dumpster about a mile away. He was issued a citation.

Now you see it, now you don't

A man was arrested at Wal-Mart for attempting to shoplift $70.64 worth of Magic playing cards by stuffing them into his pants.

* Two men were arrested at Wal-Mart for attempting to steal nearly $200 worth of CDs by stuffing them into their pants.

* A woman was arrested for attempting to steal $92.73 worth of merchandise from Wal-Mart. She placed the following items under her baby and in the baby's diaper bag: beer, girls shoes, a bra and, yes, baby items.

Stealing for Jesus

The CPD received a theft of services complaint from a store owner who rented an inflatable to a woman who used $240.75 worth of air per a meter located on the blower attached to the device. She refused to pay, stating the device was dirty and she had rented the inflatable for a church. The officer checked with the church and was told they didn't rent it and did not authorize anyone to rent it. The woman still refused to pay for the inflatable and the matter was turned over to detectives.

Suspicious timing

A woman called the CPD to the Wal-Mart parking lot to complain that someone had slashed two of her tires. She did have a lead to give the officers, however. She said she thought it might have been her ex-boyfriend who had "just been released from prison the other day."

Animal lover, people hater

A Covington resident who said he had recently gone to work for DeKalb County Animal Control reported receiving a threatening phone call. He told the CPD a female who said she was a member of PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) told him, "You kill animals and if you continue, the animals may kill you," and then closed out their comments with profanity.

Toilet snatcher

The owner of a vacant house told CPD officers someone had entered the house and stolen the toilet from the bathroom, as well as $10 worth of cleaning supplies.

Left

A woman called the CPD to report the theft of a rented vehicle. She told them she rented the car for a trip to Louisiana with her boyfriend. He left without her in the car. Officers told her she couldn't report it stolen under those circumstances, but would have to wait to see if he turned it in.

Too friendly

A woman called the NCSO to report a very nice man helped her bring some lumber home from Lowe's, which she couldn't fit into her automobile. He was in the parking lot and noticed her predicament and offered to take it home for her. He told her he was a pastor of a church and she gave him a $100 donation for the church. He then asked her if she wanted to be a part of his church, but she told him no. He then began calling her repeatedly insisting that she come to his church. She said he wouldn't leave her alone and she'd had to change her home and cell phone numbers. When she found his business card in her mailbox, she called the NCSO.

Definitely not friendly

The NCSO was called to an apartment in reference to "an animal bite." A man told them he was at a friend's house and trying to capture "a cottonmouth snake." It bit him three times on the knuckles. He was advised to go to the hospital, but declined EMS transport. He said he'd get a friend to take him.