It was quiet. Too quiet. I walked up the green carpeted stairs to a still-lit evil lair with a glowing, squawking box, but the attic level chamber was empty. Walking over to extinguish the cable signal, horror struck at the sight of packing styrofoam debris littering the green. A small fragment of brown packing tape lay like a fallen feather. My eyes shot left to (now obviously) badly hidden shipments of “merch” and I knew a capital Christmas crime had commenced. As with many domestic transgressions, the perpetrators are typically family members and this was no exception… I muzzled the wimpy good cop, stuffed him in a closet, and the bad ass cop bolted down the stairs and into the suspects dwelling with the force of a 2AM drug bust. “WHAT DID YOU OPEN???”
The suspect was a white male, 18-20, and did a terrible impression of slumber. “WHERE ARE THEY?” A quick scan of the room noted one of the hot goods, a “Harry Potter” “prophecy” proudly displayed right out in the open on a bookshelf. “WHAT THE F%$#???! WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE TAKING THOSE THINGS???” The suspect, now clearly aware the gig was up, lay prone, hoping the bust was all a bad dream. “GET UP! NOW!!!,” I bellowed and the perp slowly drew down a comforter revealing a “Jaws” tee-shirt. Strangely, there was a giant shark head coming out of the floor, but I couldn’t let that oddity distract me from my job: recovering the stolen items and documenting evidence for the “naughty list” hearing scheduled for the next morning. This present poacher was slick. He immediately lawyered up and wouldn’t respond to verbal requests. “WHERE’S THE LOOT?” He didn’t flinch. I amped up the volume like Jack Bauer does to terror suspects on “24” and it worked just like it does for Jack. Shark-guy reached for his jeans. “SLOWLY,” I warned. “That’s right pal. Nice and slow.” Two “Harvey Twoface” replica coins from “The Dark Knight” were retrieved and handed over. One item remained. “OK, WHERE’S THE BOX?” Silence. “UPSTAIRS, NOW!” was belted with more Jack gusto. “WHERE’S THE BOX?” A quick flick up of the head toward an attic door revealed the final, damning evidence. A cardboard shipping container looking like it had been chewed through by insane squirrels lay on the wooden planks. A quick search turned up a third item that the Christmas klepto had missed. I surmise panic must have ensued at some point during the crime, and the heist of the prophecy and cash was deemed sufficient for this nights smash and grab. The perp then ditched the evidence and fled.
The next morning, a contrite suspect awoke around 7AM and immediately showered. That has never happened. Ever. He also dressed in a nice shirt and a tie for an early family visit at “Nana’s…”
The Holiday Hoodlum remains in custody pending a “naughty list” ruling and possible sentencing.
Oh, and check out Jack Bauer interrogating Santa!