“You wouldn’t believe how stupid some people are,” Dave often tells me. He’s a lawyer. “Criminals are just stupid.” Here’s a story from today’s issue of the Clackamas Review that supports his claim.
Burglary leads to bizarre kidnapping, drug charges
from the 28 June 2006 issue of Clackamas Review
A residential burglary went from bad to worse in Milwaukie June 16, leading to criminal charges for all involved.
According to Clackamas County Sherrif’s Office spokesman Detective Jim Strovink, the incident started out as the sort of case law enforcement often never sees: Someone burglarized a house and discovered a marijuana-growing operation. Although the resident reportedly had a medical marijuana permit, police say he was growing far more than he was allowed.
“You’ve got one individual who burglarized the house and got some marijuana,” Strovink said, “and recognized ‘what is this stuff — this stuff is great!'”
The homeowner, Bradley Poppino, 43, was apparently away at the time. The alleged burglar, Paul Canul, 18, of Milwaukie, reportedly decided to come back.
“He recruited a couple of mopes to go with him and said ‘I’ll give you a cut if you help out.’ Little did he know that the homeowner, Poppino, had returned and discovered what had happened.”
Poppino reportedly had a friend of his own, neighbor Andrew Kester, 27, also of Milwaukie. Poppino had parked his vehicle away from the house — to make it appear he had not returned — and was waiting.
“Sure enough, the three mopes come down the road there — two go to the front and one comes to the back.”
The neighbor saw them. “He said ‘school’s out and here’s three guys with backpacks — it looks unusual.’ He pops up, and Poppino comes out of his house.”
Two of the suspects reportedly ran in one direction; the third, Canul, fled with Poppino and Kester in hot pursuit. Canul reportedly had a pistol, but “they were not intimidated — they tackled him.”
Canul was brought back to the house and allegedly duct-taped and threatened if he didn’t return the marijuana stolen in the first burglary.
“They allowed him access to a cell phone, after they started intimidating him, saying they would cut off his toes — one for every hour they didn’t have the product returned.”
He was allowed to talk to his friends, to tell them to come and bring the marijuana; in the process, he made it known to them that he was still being held at the house they had allegedly tried to rob. They called the police.
“The uniformed officers go down there from the description provided to them,” Strovink said. “They go up to the door at Poppino’s house, and they’re greeted by these two individuals, Poppino and Kester. They split the two up and start talking to them, and they give it up to them.
“They go inside, and there’s this guy — sitting in a chair with a blanket in his lap — and there’s a mountain of duct tape beside him, and his shoe’s off.”
By that time it was about 7 p.m., and Canul had been there for about four hours. Strovink said Canul confessed to stealing from the house; officers took everyone into custody.
Poppino was charged with Kidnapping I as well as with manufacturing marijuana; Kester was charged with kidnapping, as well. Canul was charged wtih Robber I and Attempted Burglary I, as well as the unlawful possession of a weapon with the intent to use it.
“This is a rather odd series of events,” Strovink said. “But it’s not unusual to have people growing marijuana — manufacturing it — to be ripped off.
In this case, he said, “you’ve got guns, drugs, and stupid people…that’s the trifecta.”
It almost sounds like the plot for a bad buddy-comedy film.