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June 25, 2011

Toilet paper caper unfolds at Lawrence City Hall

LAWRENCE — Police say a man has admitted to stealing cases of toilet paper from City Hall.

The toilet paper caper was solved Thursday afternoon when Personnel Director Frank Bonet told Officer Gary Yancey there was a man in the stairwell he believed was stealing numerous rolls of the tissues over an extended period of time.

Police say security video from one such occasion shows David Pinkham, 53, of 105 Margin St., entering the building empty handed, then leaving with a case of toilet paper he later told police contained about 20 rolls.

While Yancey spoke to Pinkham, Bonet went and got a picture taken from the security video.

Pinkham told Yancey he was just in City Hall using a second-floor bathroom, and although he had no identification on him, gave Yancey his name, address, and date of birth.

Bonet returned with two pictures showing a front and rear view of Pinkham entering City Hall empty handed and then leaving with a case of toilet paper.

Yancey read Pinkham his Miranda rights and told him he was investigating the thefts of toilet paper from City Hall, and said Pinkham agreed to talk to him.

Pinkham admitted stealing toilet paper from City Hall "five or six times, and that the last time he had done so was last week when he took six or seven rolls, according to Yancey's report.

"Yeh, that's me," Pinkham replied when Yancey showed him the surveillance photos.

Police said there is video from other occasions showing Pinkham leaving City Hall with trash bags filled with toilet paper and other types of supplies.

With his admission that he had been stealing supplies, Pinkham was arrested and charged with larceny over $250.

At the police station, Yancey asked Pinkham to remove all his belongings from his clothng and place them on the desk for inventory.

"Mr. Pinkham paused for a second then looked at me and stated 'do you want the toilet paper?' I told him I did." Yancey wrote in his report.

"Mr. Pinkham then pulled six tightly folded toilet paper rolls from his buttocks and groin area," Yancey wrote.

When Yancey asked where he got the toilet paper, Pinkham replied "City Hall."

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