Crime blotter: always save your receipts

class=img_thumbleft>On January 26th, shortly after 1 p.m., a 78-year-old resident of the 7300 block of Penn Avenue S., in Richfield, was returning home from a nearby Walgreen's, where he had purchased some sardines. Upon pulling into his driveway, the man--identified in court records only as H.S.--decided to sweep out his garage. He left the vehicle running in the driveway.

While sweeping the garage, H.S. noticed a woman walking in his front yard. She asked him for bus fare and then inquired about using his phone. When he turned down both requests, the woman--subsequently identified as Joy Faith Loftus--allegedly climbed into the idling Buick and attempted to drive away. According to a criminal complaint filed in Hennepin County District Court, H.S. opened the vehicle door and a struggle ensued over control of the steering wheel. The end result was that the Buick crashed into the house.

At this point, Loftus took off north on Penn Avenue, where she was subsequently apprehended by Richfield police officers. She told the cops that she'd been picked up by H.S. at the intersection of Lake Street and Stevens Avenue in Minneapolis, and then traveled to his home in order to perform oral sex on him. However, the officers later confirmed that he had been shopping at Walgreen's just 14 minutes prior to the theft being reported. Furthermore, a receipt showed that H.S. had indeed purchased sardines from the store.

The accident did more than $1,000 in damage to the Buick. Loftus is now charged with two felones, theft of a vehicle and criminal damage to property. According to records maintained by the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, she has three prior felony convictions, including for theft and check forgery.