Magistrate Daniel Cook, who handles small claims cases in
, was on the bench when he reached for his gavel and discovered it was missing. After checking “every possible place it could be,” police reported, Cook concluded that someone had actually stolen his gavel. Lorain, Ohio
Court personnel then reviewed surveillance video from days earlier and spotted an unknown male stealing the wooden gavel. The alleged thief, staffers realized, was accompanied by a second man who “was in court on that day trying to get his license back,” according to authorities.
In short order, cops identified the suspect as Christopher Collins, and prosecutors secured an arrest warrant for the 47-year old. Collins, pictured in the mug shot, was then arrested at his residence, where he was questioned about the “whereabouts of the gavel.”
Collins, police noted, “admitted to stealing the gavel, but stated he did not have it at the house.” He claimed to have received a ride home from the courthouse from “a male he barely knows,” and left the gavel in the man’s vehicle.