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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Most Stupid New Zealand Criminals Revealed 2008

Source: NZ Herald

As well as the murders and assaults police investigated in 2008 they were also faced with less serious offences - some of which bordered on being down-right stupid.

Napier chef Sarron John Malot led the way when he was nicknamed "the Piddler on the Roof" after being caught on security camera urinating into parking meter on July 5.

He said he had been out with friends and wanted to urinate. When they wouldn't let him do it against their car, he chose the parking machine instead.

Police dubbed him The Piddler on the Roof because the meter was on the second-floor. They said in a statement: "He pees up in the air in a big arc, so it goes in the coin slot and out the hole where people collect their tickets".

Malot pleaded guilty in court to a charge of intentionally damaging the meter. He was offered diversion by police but had to pay $200 to the city council.

German tourist Jan Philip Scharbert, 28, was in trouble for a more traditional form of property damage after he was caught tagging the Franz Josef Glacier on the West Coast.

English tourists caught Scharbert on camera as he spray-painted graffiti on the rocks and ice face of the glacier in February.

Scharbert, from Munich, was arrested and ordered to clean up the graffiti. It took him one and a half days, but he escaped a wilful damage charge when DOC was satisfied with his repair job.

Motorists also provided periods of mental lapses - especially the drunk ones.

A Christchurch man denied being drunk in charge of his car after it became stuck in the sea. He said he had a few beers to "celebrate", after the car went in the sea.

Hayden Tibbotts, 29, and a friend became stuck in the surf at Canterbury's Waikuku Beach after taking his 1988 Ford Laser for a drive along the sand.

As the waves got bigger they left the car, rang police for help, and sat on the shore drinking and "watching the waves smash into the car".

"We had been there four or five hours. We thought we may as well have a drink to celebrate the sinking of the ship.

"We weren't doing anything stupid, it doesn't sound right that I'd ring the cops myself if I was drunk driving."

Getting in touch with the cops while drink-driving is exactly what one Hastings woman did.

Bridgil Bayliss, 57, was almost two-times over the legal alcohol limit on September 23 when she was arrested after driving to the police station to ask for help with a flat tyre.

Officers smelt alcohol on her breath and a breath test showed she had 700 micrograms of alcohol per litre of breath. The legal limit is 400mcg.

She pleaded guilty to drink-driving when she appeared in Hastings District Court.

A Westport man's visit to the police station also landed him in trouble.

Eptai Taiwhanga, 19, walked into Westport police station drinking alcohol and carrying cannabis resin.

Unsurprisingly, except to him perhaps, he was hit with breaching Westport's liquor ban and possessing a Class B drug.

Judge Jane McMeeken said Taiwhanga was "incredibly stupid" and fined him $400.

"You had cannabis in your pocket and drew attention to yourself by drinking in a police station."

A Gisborne man did a better job of hiding the evidence of his crime - when faced by fisheries officers for paua poaching he ate all the paua.

Ivan Harrison, 51, was seen by fisheries officers carrying sacks of seafood to his vehicle at Kaiti Beach near Gisborne in July.

The officers visited his home, but Harrison had thrown the sack from his vehicle as he left the beach.

A search of the beach failed to locate the sack because Harrison had returned and consumed its contents while the fisheries officers were getting a warrant.

Harrison was convicted of obstructing a fishery officer, sentenced to 100 hours community service and ordered to forfeit his vehicle.

A Hawke's Bay man desperate to raise money to pay off a prostitute was less subtle; he thought flashing his erect penis at an unsuspecting woman would help bring in cash.

Matenga Timoti Mason, 25, a Dannevirke sickness beneficiary, knocked on a stranger's door on October 2 and when the 49-year-old woman opened it he began begging her for money.

Mason told the woman his gang was after him for not paying a prostitute and would slit his throat if he didn't come up with the money.

When she refused to let him inside he said "I want to show you something...I want to show you this," displaying his erect penis.

He pleaded guilty to indecent assault and obscene exposure when he appeared in Dannevirke District Court.

While a number of criminals made stupid decisions, often the police proved not so bright themselves.

A 25cm cannabis plant grew for two months outside Timaru's courthouse and police station before being discovered by a policeman.

It was growing at the base of a table, likely to have started life after someone lit up a joint and discarded the butt there. It was plucked and destroyed.

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