By Gary Meyer, TME Publisher
When a call was received at The Mountain Enterprise office on Thursday, Jan. 31, from a reader complaining that there were no newspapers in the rack at Midway Market in Lake of the Woods, Office Manager Jill Turner knew something was wrong. It was only 2:55 p.m. and the papers had just been delivered throughout the mountain.
I hopped in the car to go investigate, stopping first at Frazier Park Post Office to check the rack there.
All newspapers were gone from the post office.
To prepare for filing the report with the sheriff’s office, we first calculate how many papers were purchased before the remainder was stolen.
I put more papers in the post office rack and left for Lake of the Woods. At Midway Market, I calculated the number of stolen papers, placed more papers in the rack and took off for Mountain View Market at Lockwood Valley Road where all papers had also been taken. In all, 269 papers were stolen from three locations.
Kern County Sheriff’s Deputy Matt Alvarez took the report and, by 10:30 p.m., called the newspaper office to say he had solved the case and recovered the newspapers. He identified for us the man who took the papers. We will not detail how Deputy Alvarez was able to solve the case.
On the morning of Friday, Feb. 1, a woman called The Mountain Enterprise. She said she is the girlfriend of the man who took the newspapers. She said he is a good person. I responded saying he has been making some pretty bad decisions.
Andrew Einstoss of Lake of the Woods was distraught because his name was in the Sheriff’s Log after he was arrested on a 2016 warrant for misdemeanor drug possession and a parking infraction.
Einstoss came to The Mountain Enterprise office, apologized and explained, “I’m not a bad person.
I didn’t want people in this town associating me with actions that had put me in trouble in the past.
“After I removed the newspapers from a few locations, I thought to myself, ‘What am I doing?’ I realized that I was only causing more trouble for myself,” he said.
After thinking about what he was in the midst of doing, Einstoss said he decided to return the newspapers. But Deputy Alvarez was a few steps ahead of Einstoss’ decision to return the papers.
The deed had been done. Deputy Alvarez arrested Einstoss for the newspaper thefts and released him pending a March 1 court date.
“I’ve more than learned my lesson from this. Nothing good will come from poor judgement added to earlier poor judgement,” he said.
All newspapers were returned by the sheriff’s department to The Mountain Enterprise and subsequently placed back in the racks for readers to purchase.
This man, who stole newspapers, came to apologize.
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This is part of the February 15, 2019 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.
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