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This week’s crime files: From a purloined pocketbook to munching on the landscape

POSTED June 1, 2012 4:34 p.m.

Here is a quick lesson in manners: If a business is kind enough to let you use their restroom without being a customer, the polite thing is to thank them and leave — and most importantly, don’t steal anything on the way out.

Twenty-nine year old Zeb Grunloh apparently has not learned this lesson. Grunloh asked to use the restroom at a downtown eatery Wednesday night. On his way out, Grunloh allegedly swiped a purse belonging to one of the servers.

The Turlock Police Department was contacted and the theft was traced back to Grunloh, who as it turned out was wanted by the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department for cutting off his ankle monitor and disappearing from authorities. Grunloh has previous convictions for driving under the influence and grand theft. He was found at a residence on Bothun Road and arrested for theft.

Speaking of restaurant thefts, a 16-year-old boy couldn’t resist a cell phone resting on a table at a Turlock restaurant during the lunchtime rush Wednesday.

The 16-year-old boy may have thought it was easy pickings to swipe the phone off the table on his way out the door, but he was mistaken, because the dining guest decided to give chase.

The victim chased the boy for several blocks before catching the sticky-fingered teen. The TPD reported that the cell phone was recovered and the teen was booked for theft.

Besides getting the cell phone back, the diner got the added bonus of running off enough calories to make room for dessert.

In the realm of bad decisions, Larry Boecken, 30, could be a contender for the top spot. What he won’t be in the running for is the award for employee of the month.

Boecken was confronted by his boss Thursday morning for allegedly showing up to work drunk and letting loose with enough expletives to make a sailor blush. For his trouble, the boss was punched, courtesy of Boecken, according to the TPD.

Boecken was placed under citizen’s arrest and booked for assault and battery.

There’s no question that being under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs can make some people do some strange things, but Kristopher Neal’s actions Thursday night might just take the cake.

Neal, 24, was reported as a suspicious person in the 1200 block of Fifth Street. What made Neal so suspicious? Perhaps it was because he was found eating tree leaves and seed pods.

Neal was allegedly found to be under the influence of heroin and placed under arrest for public intoxication, according to the TPD.

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