Child's Birthday Cake Attacked in Washington Courthouse

GMA VIDEO: Birthday Cake Attacked in Courthouse

A Washington state man's sweet tooth led to his arrest Tuesday after he allegedly dug into a birthday cake on his way to a court appearance.

Robert Eric Fredrickson, 50, of Longview was passing through a metal detector at the Cowlitz County Hall of Justice when he allegedly dug his hand into a frosting-covered cake sitting on the screening table.

The cake had been brought into the courthouse by Michelle Flavin, who did not want to leave the cake, purchased for her daughter's birthday, outside in her car with her dog, according to authorities.

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After allegedly taking some of the cake, Fredrickson walked over to a water fountain where he was approached and questioned by a sheriff's deputy, Cowlitz County Undersheriff Marc Gilchrist told

When the deputy turned away to get paper towels, Fredrickson walked back to the cake and allegedly took another swipe.

A non-uniformed sheriff's deputy guarding the screening booth grabbed Fredrickson's arm and put him under arrest, according to Gilchrist.

"It was pretty quick," he said. "The civilian-clothed deputy pulled him over the table and onto the floor and the uniformed deputy came over and they subdued him."

Fredrickson was booked and charged with third-degree theft, a misdemeanor punishable by up to 364 days in jail and up to a $5,000 fine.

It's unclear what brought Fredrickson to the courthouse Tuesday. It is also unclear whether or not he has entered a plea in the charge of third-degree theft.

The incident, Gilchrist says, was an unusual occurrence for the courthouse that services a population of around 100,000.

"We don't have much excitement at our screening stations," he said.

After the incident became public, a local bakery gave Flavin a replacement birthday cake free of charge.

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