Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Reporter's Job Made Easy: Small Town Vermont Newspaper Witnesses Dumb Criminal Story Unfold In Their Parking Lot

The Barton Chronicle is an excellent, scrappy newspaper in Vermont's rural, remote Northeast Kingdom.
The Barton Chronicle in Vermont had a story come
to them, making reporters' day both easy and weird.  

The reporters there are quite capable of taking the initiative of going out and finding local stories to cover, but the other day, they had an easy time of it.

According to the Chronicle, staffers witnessed a man very ineptly steal reporter Paul Lefebvre's already battered Honda CRV from the paper's parking lot in the town of Barton.

Well, that story was easy for the paper to verify. The saw the damn thing unfold themselves.

An editor arriving for an evening shift thought it odd there was a man sitting inside Lefebvre's car. She mentioned it to Lefebvre, who was working in the newspaper office. He looked out the window to see the man drive his car away. Sort of.

The CRV has a stick shift, and the guy had trouble managing that. Lefebvre, in fact was almost able to catch up to the car and the thief on foot, but not quite.  So staffers called the police and posted a note about the theft on the Chronicle's Facebook page.

Lefebvre's car was certainly unique and would stick out in anybody's mind if they saw it, seeing how the back window was busted out and covered with a green tarp and duct tape from an accident a few days ago.

(Speaking for experience, I know reporters, especially those in rural Vermont, don't necessarily make lots of money, so they often find inexpensive ways to repair or replace stuff they need)

A few hours later, people who had seen the Facebook post saw the CRX in the nearby village of Orleans.  Lefebvre called the cops, who went to Orleans pronto and found the suspected car thief emerging from the restroom of a Texaco station.  The alleged thief was promptly arrested.

Judging from the Chronicle article, I'm not sure Lefebvre really wants his car back. Besides the accident it was in, it has needed other costly repairs recently, such as a new water pump, motor and clutch.

But on the bright side, nothing was stolen from the car,  and the paper had an easy time putting an excellent article out for its loyal readers to gander at.

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