Crawfish tail bandit huffs and puffs, but couldn’t make his car go

Photo provided by the Thibodaux Police Department.
Thursday, August 15, 2013 - 11:00pm

A 48-year-old man was arrested after he allegedly stole crawfish tails from a grocery store. Police were able to identify him because witnesses managed to snap some pictures during his attempt to escape.

According to the Thibodaux Police Department, the suspect, Eric Williams, committed the theft on Wednesday, Aug. 14 at roughly 3:22 p.m. When employees spotted him trying to leave the store with the crawfish, they chased him into the parking lot. Although he made it to his vehicle, his escape attempt was thwarted.

“He has an ignition interlock device, so when he got to his vehicle, he was so winded from running that he was unable to blow hard enough to make the vehicle start,” David Melancon, Thibodaux Police Department, said.

The interlock device was placed on Williams’ vehicle after his second DWI conviction.

“He was arrested in 2005 after he committed a traffic violation and a test showed he had a blood alcohol level of .232,” Melancon explained.

It took Williams so long to muster up enough air to make the device work that employees were able to take pictures of his license plate.

“Employees stood by taking pictures, inviting him to give up and come back inside,” Melancon noted.

Williams was eventually successful and took off in his truck. A store employee called police and handed over the pictures and video that identified Williams as the suspect.

“Police found Williams at his home a short time later,” Melancon explained. “He told the officers that he couldn’t have committed the crime because he was at work until 4:30 p.m. The officer noted that it was not 4:30 p.m., and they placed him under arrest.”

Williams was arrested and charged with Theft of Goods. He was booked into the Lafouche Parish Detention Center. His bond was set at $500.

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