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Boy, 9, Arrested in Gum-Stealing Incident

Idaho kid allegedly blows off court date because he supposedly couldn't get there
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 12, 2015 1:33 PM CST
Boy, 9, Arrested in Gum-Stealing Incident
Someone's about to burst an Idaho boy's bubble with an arrest warrant.   (Shutterstock)

Here's something to chew on: a 9-year-old who was arrested in Idaho for stealing a pack of gum. Or rather, for skipping the court date at which he would have had to face up to his alleged candy-themed crime, the AP reports. Scott Haug, the police chief in Post Falls, tells KHQ that it's not that unusual for local businesses to turn patrons in even for small thieving jobs, but his eyebrows raised at a "failure to appear" warrant that came across his desk last week for someone so young—something he had never seen in his 30 years on the force. "I was surprised that it had gotten to this level," he says.

The Kootenai County prosecuting attorney who issued the warrant can't comment on the case because the boy's a minor, but Haug says the warrant was issued because it was the child's second missed court date; he adds that the family reportedly had no way to get him to the courthouse. "Had we known that before the court date, we would have provided something for the family," Haug tells KHQ. For now, the 9-year-old is in a juvenile detention center awaiting his appearance before a judge, with no date given yet. (At least he didn't chew gum in China during a high-level APEC meeting.)

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