Dec. 23, 2004 -- -- Holiday shoppers vent some Christmas rage over a parking spot; Santa Claus attacks an elderly woman with a 2-by-4 in Atlanta; and a so-called "Santa Claus burglar" gets stuck in a chimney. The real Santa is making a list and checking it twice in the North Pole. If he's consulting the holiday edition of "The Crime Blotter," he'll find some people have been naughty and not very nice.
WEST HARTFORD, Conn. -- Three holiday shoppers were not feeling Christmas cheer as they duked it out over a parking space at a shopping center.
Police in West Hartford said three people were arrested on Dec. 19 after a melee erupted when a parking space opened up in a crowded parking lot at Corbins Corner Shopping Center. When the parking space became available, two cars vied for the spot.
Police said a woman driving one car threw an orange peel at the other car. Angry words were exchanged and three people then jumped out of both cars and began to tussle.
No one was injured, but authorities said Luz Alicea, 43, Julia Baldini, 22, and a 16-year-old girl were charged with breach of peace. Santa may have a lump of coal waiting for them in their Christmas stockings.
ATLANTA -- A man dressed as Santa Claus didn't behave like St. Nick at all when he allegedly attacked a 74-year-old woman with a 2-by-4 board at a shopping mall.
On Dec. 10, police said, Elkin Donnie Clarke, 49, hit Annie Ruth Nelson in the face and head with the board, knocking her unconscious. When a second woman, Aisha Albritton, intervened and tried to keep Clarke from further striking Nelson, he threatened her with the board, authorities said.
Before Clarke was arrested, he was seen taking off a Santa hat and red shirt in an alleged attempt to get rid of evidence, police said. Clarke told police Nelson had taken 29 sealed boxes of Hershey's chocolates worth $145 from him, but officials said no witnesses could confirm his claim.
The Santa with the 2-by-4 was charged with two counts of aggravated assault.
LONG BEACH, Calif. -- A would-be burglar was caught in the act when he tried to enter a home through the chimney and got stuck, authorities said.
The suspect, dubbed "The Santa Claus Burglar" by Long Beach authorities, was not ho-ho-hoing but screaming for about half an hour in the early morning hours on Nov. 20 before someone heard him and called the fire department. Firefighters pulled him out with a rope.
No one was home at the residence the so-called Santa Claus Burglar allegedly tried to enter. Police did not release "Santa's" real name, but said the 19-year-old had two female helpers who were found on the roof.
Santa and his alleged helpers faced attempted burglary charges. And poor Rudolph turned red with embarrassment.