The TV/Downtown/Tues Dec 11/9:30 am: Officer K. Bair reports: "According to complainant, he arrived at work around 7:30 a.m. this morning. About 30 minutes later, he got a call from his receptionist asking what he did with the 42-inch plasma TV from the lobby. He reviewed the surveillance video and noticed a black male enter the lobby and take the TV without interruption. The suspect then left the lobby and walked away southbound on Third Avenue. It is believed that the suspect may have followed an employee who had access into the building. The building is not open to the public and an access device is needed. The complainant is currently reviewing the tape to see whom the suspect might have followed in. He also stated that the suspect could have gained access to the lobby from the parking-garage basement. He has surveillance there as well, which he will be reviewing. I left behind a victim follow-up form with the complainant. Suspect was a black male, 20s, wearing a black coat with hood, black pants, and white T-shirt."

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Why this report? Why not another crime? A person stole a TV—what's the big news? Sir, wait, I have my reasons. Reason number one, and the only reason I have space to mention in this column, is this: The place the theft occurred, the scene of the crime, is... KIRO 7. Do you see what I'm getting at? Can you picture it? If not, I will say it again: The suspect stole a TV from a TV station. Please, by now you must get the picture. This is not the way most criminals think. If he (the criminal, that is) wakes up in the morning and has it in his head that today is the day to steal a TV, two options will instantly present themselves: one, to burgle a house, and two, to burgle a store. Not for a moment, for second, for a flash across the screen of the mind, will this idea present itself to him: three, to burgle a TV station. But if you give the third option a little consideration, you will soon see that it has a shimmer of sense. And if you give the option even deeper thought, you will begin to see the sun of its simple logic—the logic of stealing a TV from a TV station. Indeed, isn't that the first place that a criminal, say, from outer space, a crooked E.T., would go if it had no idea how one steals a TV on planet Earth? The idea of burgling an earthling's house or store would not appear to it before the idea of burgling the station for TVs, the center of TVs, the point of their radiation, the source of their entire meaning. We may wonder which came first, the chicken or the egg; in the case of the TV and the TV station, there is no such wonder—we know which came first. recommended

charles@thestranger.com

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