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Man Finds Himself Behind Bars After Making Phone Call When Car Won't Start

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When the car won’t start, who would you call? The AAA? A tow truck? Someone to pick you up?

As hypotheticals go, there’s no particular right answer to this question, although some are better than others. I can tell you there’s at least one wrong answer to the query, though: Calling the person you stole it from.

That very obvious lesson, alas, was somehow lost on alleged criminal mastermind Edward Leroy Wilson of Sauk Centre, Minnesota.

According to the St. Cloud Times, Wilson, 37, allegedly stole an SUV from the parking lot of a Sartell, Minnesota Walmart this past Monday night. Video surveillance showed the vehicle driving away shortly after 8:30 p.m.; the owner said they had auto-started the car from inside to warm it up, but instead found it gone.

Starting your car inside a store may not have been the greatest move in the world, but as bad decisions go, it’s pretty minor key.

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Thankfully for the owner, it wasn’t the dumbest decision that was going to be made in relation to the car that night.

“About 10:30 p.m., the owner received a call from a woman saying a man was asking her questions about the car,” the St. Cloud Times reported. “Wilson then spoke to the owner on the phone, and told her his name was Wayne Hennen and he worked for a glass repair shop.”

“After Wilson parked the car, it would not start again, so he had called to ask if she would contact someone who could start the car for him, the report said.”

Criminals this brilliant are usually found sending error-ridden emails explaining how they’re Nigerian royalty and have been told by a very reliable source you’re the kind of trustworthy person who can discreetly move tens of millions of dollars through wire services, if only you’ll give them your bank account and routing numbers.

Is this the dumbest criminal you've ever heard of?

Unfortunately for Mr. Wilson, he wasn’t in the relative remove of Lagos but instead stuck in the nearby community of Isle, Minnesota, roughly one hour away from the Walmart. Not only is it a great deal colder in Isle, it’s also a bit harder to hide among its 751 residents than it would be among the 16 million denizens of Nigeria’s largest city.

“During the phone call, Isle police responded to a suspicious person complaint and found it was Wilson and the stolen vehicle,” the Times noted. “After being arrested, Wilson admitted to stealing the vehicle and that ‘he knew that it was not a good idea to get in the vehicle,’ the complaint states.”

Well, um, duh.

Just in case you were wondering, KNSI-FM reports that the vehicle in question was a 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee. No offense to our Jeep-owning readership — who all own wonderful, capable, rugged automobiles that are definitely not undesirable — but would you really risk prison to purloin a six-year-old Grand Cherokee? I mean, if you’re a degenerate thief who would be willing to steal a remote-started vehicle from a Walmart parking lot, at least wait on a Range Rover or something. Then again, this guy likely doesn’t quite get how water turns into ice and he lives in Minnesota, so that’s probably hoping for too much.

Wilson has been charged with theft of a motor vehicle and had his bond sent at $25,000. His next court date is on April 16. He will presumably spend the interim behind bars, searching for the doorknob on his jail cell so that he can let himself out.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Birthplace
Morristown, New Jersey
Education
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture




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