Tony Taylor was arrested in Chicago in October after driving off with a woman’s SUV by convincing her he was a valet parking agent and handing her a claim check. He was detained shortly afterward at a nearby Nordstrom only because he tried to get cash refunds for items that had been in the woman’s back seat.
A woman notified police in Fremont, Calif., in September that a thief had rummaged through her vehicle at night but had taken only a low-end gift-shop item — leaving behind a checkbook, some money and an expensive pillow. The item, she said, perhaps looked like a small bag of marijuana, but in reality was a novelty-store bag of dried elephant dung. “It’s a great gag gift,” she said.