Thief apprehended after he falls through the ceiling of an Idaho Subway

broken acoustic tiles in a drop ceiling
Photo: RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post (Getty Images)

I don’t know why people seem to think hiding in ceilings is a good idea. Maybe we can blame The Breakfast Club? Or maybe the story of a man who lived in the rafters of a Tacoma, Washington, grocery store last year has been inspirational. But know this: there’s a skill to hiding in ceilings, especially dropped ceilings. If you’re not careful, you’ll fall through the tiles and land right in the path of your pursuers. At least that’s what happened to Jesse James Moore, who was trying to hide in the ceiling of a Subway in Idaho Falls, Idaho, last Tuesday night, and presumably devour some of the ham he’d hidden in his pockets.

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The fall from the ceiling was only the final incident in an evening-long crime spree and a dramatic pursuit by the cops, reports EastIdahoNews.com. All right, the chase was on foot across a parking lot, but it ended with a guy hiding in a ceiling, so it still sounds kind of dramatic.

Anyway, apparently Moore’s crimes began around 6 p.m. when he approached a kid in a skate park and asked to buy his $480 BMX bike. The kid said no, but when he turned away, Moore got on the bike and rode away. The kid’s mom filed a police report immediately.

About three hours later, another bike theft was reported in the parking lot of a supermarket. This bike was a Harley-Davidson motorcycle that the owner had left in the lot while he went inside to buy groceries. In its place was the missing BMX bike.

But Moore didn’t get far. The owner of the Harley had flipped the fuel cutoff switch when he parked it and the thief hadn’t known to flip it back, so police discovered the stolen motorcycle almost immediately, in a parking lot across the street. Whereupon they spotted Moore walking across the parking lot to the Subway. They gave chase, but Moore locked himself in the women’s bathroom.

Here’s where it gets really dramatic. Per EastIdahoNews.com:

Police heard rustling inside, and Moore refused to come out. Additional sounds came from the restroom indicated Moore might have been trying to get into the ceiling.

The owner of the Subway then kicked open the restroom door. Officers rushed inside and found pieces of the ceiling around Moore, who lay on the ground, having fallen from the ceiling.

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Moore, as it happened, was already known to the owner of the Subway. “The (Subway) employees reported the man had been in the store earlier in the day, several times, and had actually come behind the counter, filled out an application for a job and attempted to help them with service,” said Jessica Clements, a spokeswoman for the Idaho Falls Police Department. That was also when he took the ham.

Police apprehended Moore and took him to the county jail, where he posed for a mug shot with a shit-eating grin and was charged with felony grand theft for the Harley, misdemeanor petty theft for the bike, petty theft for the ham, and misdemeanor malicious injury to property for the Subway ceiling. EastIdahoNews.com would like to remind you that he remains innocent until proven guilty. His preliminary court hearing is June 2. Meanwhile, I’m sure the Idaho Falls police will be laughing about this one for quite a while.

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Associate editor of The Takeout. Chicagoan. Owned by dog.

DISCUSSION

thedrdonna
"Not a real" DrDonna

Y’all. T-bar ceiling is not meant to hold your weight. It’s literally suspended from the real ceiling using thin little wires. And pretty much everything up there is razor-sharp, because the people who do those installations know that there’s no reason to blunt down those edges. Plus it’s probably dusty as fuck. Stay out of the ceiling.