The Hudson Valley had its fair share of weird crime in 2012: a man engaged in sexual activity with a dog, a vacuum was held hostage and a woman claimed to be harassed telepathically. Tire and metal thefts were rampant, but no one expected a homeless Ossining man to sue rapper Eminem for allegedly stealing his idea for a commercial. Here is a collection of the best of our weekly column, Unusual Suspects, from the last year. Reports do not indicate a conviction. Enjoy!
11. Actor Stephen Baldwin Arrested for Failing to Pay Income Taxes
Actor Stephen Baldwin was arrested in Rockland County for allegedly failing to pay New York State taxes for a three-year period, totaling $350,000, including penalties and interest. Baldwin is a resident of Upper Grandview.
10. Coast Guard Confirms Light Reflects on River
A man called Irvington police to report a "discoloration with a blue-ish hue in the middle of the river." After police confirmed the color was there, the Coast Guard was brought in and determined the discoloration was sunlight.
9. Tarrytown Police: Vacuum Held Hostage
A disgruntled employee held a $1,200 vacuum hostage hoping to pressure his Tarrytown-based employer to pay him money he was allegedly owed. The business owner filed a complaint with police and asked not to press charges, but to have the vacuum returned. The employee returned the vacuum and police recommended he take the employer to court if he was really owed wages.
8. Man Caught With Cheese
A 40-year-old man was caught with 17 packages of Kraft cheese in his backpack after walking out of Shop Rite in White Plains without paying for the products. The cheese was valued at $95.
A diaper-clad toddler walked a quarter-mile alone before Carmel police stopped the boy from crossing a busy road. The boy was discovered in front of police headquarters when an ex-Cub scout visiting the station noticed him and pointed him out to his mother. Apparently, the boy was planning to visit his grandfather. The toddler was returned to his mother.
6. Mating Turkey Vultures in Hastings-on-Hudson
A woman feared a possible gas leak in Hastings-on-Hudson after noticing turkey vultures in the area. In spite of not smelling gas, the woman believed the turkey vultures, who have an unusually keen sense of smell, had detected the leak and been attracted to the area. Officials told the woman that it was turkey vulture mating season and that's probably why they were in the area.
5. Naked Man Emerges From Car
A man called Hastings police to report a black Lexus was parked on his property. When the man's mother went outside to confront the car's operator, a naked man emerged from the car and pushed her into the bushes. Police identified the car's owner and discovered his son had been driving the vehicle that night. No charges were filed.
4. House Painter Arrested After Hiding In Client's Closet
A Scarsdale resident called police after seeing someone hiding in a third-floor closet of the resident's home. An Elmsford house painter revealed himself to police after they searched the floor. Police also discovered the basement windows had been concealed with cardboard and various items belonging to the painter were found in the basement area, including "the defendant's lunch box, sneakers, T-shirt, silicone vagina-style sex toy... and a dark stain that was left on the carpet," according to the police report.
3. Homeless Ossining Man Sues Eminem
A homeless Ossining man was reportedly set to sue hip-hop artist Eminem for $9 million, reports AllHipHop.com. The man claimed Eminem used an idea he gave him during a phone conversation for what would eventually become a Super Bown commercial. The man claims he gave the idea to Eminem while at White Plain's Legal Seafood restaurant with pop star Christina Aguilera, who put him on the phone with the rapper.
2. Bestiality in Rye?
Kujtim Nicaj was arrested for burglary and later admitted to engaging in acts of bestiality with a dog in the apartment he burglarized. Nicaj was employed as a superintendent at the Rye Colony Apartments, where the incidents took place.
1. Woman Complains of 'Telepathic Harassment'
A woman at Tarrytown's Warner Library told police she was being telepathically harassed by a man in another room of the library. Police questioned the man and a witness who both claimed the man had no contact with the woman. According to the woman, the man had done something similar at a Walgreens about one month earlier.