Police Blotter

Confusion and intrusion

McKenna Dirks

More stories from McKenna Dirks

3rd and Vine
April 5, 2022

Friend or foe?

On Sept. 17, an officer was called to Karlgaard Tower South at approximately 4:54 p.m., in response to a fraud case. The communication center said to make contact with the complainant, Subject 1, on the seventh floor, regarding this case. 

The communication center said Subject 1 had given her social security number to an unknown individual over the phone. 

Upon arrival, the officer made contact with Subject 1 in her room. She said she had received a call from an unknown caller at around 4:50 p.m. 

Subject 1 said the caller stated he was with the Social Security Administration and that she was under investigation for human trafficking out of Nevada. 

She said the operator identified himself as a social security agent going by the name of “Sam L.” Subject 1 said the operator told her that her social security number was suspended due to illegal activity.

She said she provided the operator with the last four digits of her social security number and her full legal name. 

Subject 1 said she then became suspicious and hung up her phone. She described said operator as being a male with a middle eastern accent.

She said she had already been in contact with her bank to cancel her accounts. 

The officer advised subject 1 to contact the Social Security Administration in regard to her social security number. She told the officer she had not provided the operator with any other information. 

The officer provided Subject 1 with a UW-Eau Claire Police Department Victim Information form, and also advised her to contact the UW-Eau Claire Police Department in the event suspicious activity began to occur regarding her social security number or bank accounts. 

Subject 1 said she understood and the officer answered any questions she had, then cleared the scene. 

Where did you come from, where did you go?

On the night of Sept. 19, an officer was called to McPhee parking lot in regards to a stolen vehicle. The officer met with the complainant, Subject 1, in the McPhee lot, where he said he believed his car had been stolen. 

He described his car as being a 2010 red Ford Focus, four door sedan. Subject 1 said he and his father were the only ones to have keys to the vehicle. He said he contacted his father and his father said he did not take the vehicle. 

Subject 1 said he parked the vehicle in the McPhee lot around 5:00 p.m., and noticed it was missing at 8:00 p.m.

 He said there was about three-fourths of a tank of gas left in the vehicle. He said he didn’t know of anyone who would have taken it and did not give anyone permission to take the vehicle. 

Subject 1 showed the officer where he had parked the vehicle and the officer observed the parking spot was empty. 

The officer noticed there was no broken glass or other marks in the area indicating the vehicle was damaged. 

Subject 1 said the vehicle had a “coexist” bumper sticker on the back along with “Rick and Morty” cartoon characters on the back window. He also said there was a “Northland” sticker on the back indicating the vehicle was purchased at a Northland Ford dealership. 

Subject 1 said his wallet was in the center console, but only contained one dollar in cash. However, his debit card was also in there, he said. 

The officer searched the area and did not find any vehicles matching Subject 1’s description.

While conducting patrol later in the night, the officer said they located the vehicle in the Philips parking lot. The officer contacted Subject 1 and told him this information. 

Subject 1 said he did in fact park his vehicle in the Philips lot and had been to McPhee twice during the day, therefore causing him to think he had parked his vehicle there. 

The officer told Subject 1 that his vehicle was locked and that everything appeared to be intact. Subject 1 said he would come pick his vehicle up.

Wrong place, wrong time

On the night of Sept. 21 at approximately 11:14 p.m., an officer was contacted by Student Patrol for the odor of marijuana coming from Putnam Park.

When the officer arrived on the scene, they observed a group of people on Putnam Rock. Two of the subjects began walking towards them, and they stopped to identify themselves and their reason of contact. 

Soon after the officer introduced themselves, the remainder of the individuals began to leave and walk away on Putnam Trail. 

Another officer called the other individuals over and the first officer explained to everyone why they were making contact with them, and asked to see the subject’s identification. The officers identified seven subjects.

The first officer questioned the group about the odor of marijuana, and they all stated they had not smoked marijuana. 

The officer said they could smell the odor of marijuana coming from the area, but no one admitted to using marijuana. 

The second officer then asked if anyone had any illegal substances on them, and three people, Subject 1, Subject 2 and Subject 3, admitted to having illegal items on them.

Subject 1 and Subject 3 admitted to having marijuana in their possession, and Subject 2 admitted to having alcohol in his backpack. 

The second officer then asked to see the alcohol that Subject 2 had on him, and he opened his backpack to reveal a variety of canned beer, adding up to 12 cans in total. The officer then advised Subject 2 to pour out the beer and to recycle the cans when he passed a recycling bin. 

The first officer then returned the IDs and told the subjects who did not have any illegal substances on them that they were free to go. They then returned Subject 2’s ID and warned him of underage possession of alcohol. 

The officer then escorted Subject 1 and Subject 3 to their squad car and performed record checks  — both came back valid with no wants. 

The officer told them they were eligible for the diversion program in Eau Claire and explained it to them. Both subjects stated they would like to participate in the program. 

The officer filled out both diversion agreements and both subjects initialed next to certain dates. They answered any questions the subjects had about the contact and the diversion program, then took custody of the marijuana-related items that Subject 1 and Subject 3 had in their possession and then cleared the scene.

The officer transported the items to the UW-Eau Claire Police Department for processing. 

Dirks can be reached at [email protected]