Cops Nab Electric Leaf Owner Before He Can Ride Free On Your Nickel

Thomas Kreutzer
by Thomas Kreutzer
cops nab electric leaf owner before he can ride free on your nickel

The owner of a Nissan Leaf was arrested in Georgia last week for stealing 5 cents worth of electricity after he plugged his car into the exterior outlet at a local middle school while his son was playing tennis.

According to Atlanta’s NBC affiliate, 11 Alive, the car had only been plugged in for a few minutes when a police officer arrived and informed the man that he was committing theft and directed him to unplug the car. Later, after verifying the school had not given the man permission to use the outlet, the officer pursued an arrest warrant. The man was arrested by two deputies who appeared at his home 11 days later and spent more than 15 hours in the DeKalb County Jail before making bail.

Advocates of electric vehicles will decry this as police over reach and argue that amount of energy involved was negligible. The police, on the other hand, have taken a tough, no nonsense approach and, in their opinion, theft is theft no matter how little was stolen. I’m left asking is this what our society has come to? What kind of dumbass figures that he can charge his car for free wherever he stops? On the other hand, what kind of cop is petty enough to chase a guy down for a nickel? I wonder, would the cops have rolled in on this guy if he had “stolen” water from the drinking fountain at the side of the school to fill a leaky radiator? Clearly, the only ones who are going to win this battle will be the lawyers.

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  • Sideshowtom98 Sideshowtom98 on Dec 05, 2013

    A few years ago the DeKab County Sheriff was arrested for putting out a contract murder on his election opponent. He was convicted of murder. These are who the fine of DeKalb vote for.

    • Jz78817 Jz78817 on Dec 05, 2013

      yes, I'm sure the voters intentionally elected someone they knew was a murderer. :rolleyes:

  • Jpolicke Jpolicke on Dec 05, 2013

    The story as told on the link says the Leaf driver "routinely plugs into publicly accessible outlets". So this guy thinks he's entitled to mooch free power all over town. How many people are out there like him? The message needs to go out loud and clear that this is not OK or Home Depot better stock up on locking outlet covers.

    • See 5 previous
    • Pch101 Pch101 on Dec 05, 2013

      @mnm4ever Giving him a ticket would have probably been sufficient.

  • Mnm4ever Mnm4ever on Dec 05, 2013

    "Stealing" electricity is not the same as stealing gas or food. Just the value of it alone is insignificant. If you want to punish this guy for plugging his Leaf in then you also need to prosecute anyone who plugs in a cell phone or a laptop, or anyone who drinks from a water fountain. I think its very clear that many people are extremely resentful towards electric car owners and just want them punished.

    • See 3 previous
    • 285exp 285exp on Dec 05, 2013

      @SCE to AUX SCE: I think that's great, and if people voluntarily offer to help out other range-impaired drivers then good on them, but that's entirely different than someone helping themselves to power from outlets that are not designated as free. If some poor EV driver coasted up to my house, knocked on the door, and asked permission to plug up to my outlet for a couple of bucks worth of electricity I'd have no problem. If I found him plugged up without permission I would. I realize that the amount of electricity involved here is not great, and part of that is because they made him stop, but the initial reporting puts this guy in a much more favorable light than the subsequent reporting, and I have to admit that I will be skeptical of the account of a proven petty thief who apparently feels entitled to plug up wherever he pleases.

  • 50merc 50merc on Dec 05, 2013

    Hanging is too good for that scoundrel! Future headlines: "Starbucks patron arrested for plugging iPad into wall outlet." And "Traveler nabbed using electric shaver in airport restroom." Ve must haff discipline! To hell with proportionality!