Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Hunting for a good pair of socks

Columbus, OH - "Behind a North Side store, a frightened 9-year-old was stripped of his shoes and socks.

"The stranger who pulled them off had grabbed the child, then fled with the socks. As he ran, he dropped a piece of identification.

"The ID led police to Maurice C. Teague, who told officers he has more than 500 pairs of children’s socks. Police haven’t yet confirmed why or how he obtained them.

"'It’s odd, obviously — someone going after little boys’ socks,' detective Guy Patete of the Columbus police said. [cops love to state the obvious]

"Teague was arrested Sunday at his home. He had been stopped in the Ohio State University campus area earlier that day for attempting to buy socks from a child, which was creepy but not criminal, said detective Scott LeRoy. [see what I mean?]

"Police say that’s how Teague’s encounter with the 9-year-old began on Friday.

"According to police, the child was returning home from a Kroger store on Morse Road about 6:30 p.m. when Teague approached him and asked if he could buy his socks for $5. When the boy said no, Teague offered $10.

"When the child declined again, Teague allegedly picked him up and ran along the rear of the store to the loading dock area, where he pulled off the child’s shoes and then the socks from his feet.

"Teague has no criminal record.

"LeRoy declined to comment on why Teague wanted the socks or what he did with them. He said the investigation continues."