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Man grabbed handful of cash from tip jar, police say

Man grabbed handful of cash from tip jar, police say

A homeless man stole cash from a State Street restaurant's tip jar Monday night after the store refused him free food, police said.

The Madison police department said 60-year-old Ray A. Wallace was at the Five Guys Burgers and Fries at 517 State St. shortly before 8 p.m.

Wallace reportedly asked the Five Guys manager for a "burger for credit," but the manager said that wasn't possible. Wallace then reached into the tip jar and grabbed a handful of money, about $10, according to the report.

The manager yelled, but Wallace walked out, police said. The manager provided police with a description of the thief, and officers found Wallace with a bottle of alcohol and tip jar money.

Wallace was arrested on suspicion of theft and unlawful possession or consumption of an open intoxicant on a public street.

Man suspected of throwing teen to ground, stealing purse

Man suspected of throwing teen to ground, stealing purse

Police said a man who attacked a teen and stole her purse in downtown Madison Tuesday afternoon was arrested Wednesday night.

Madison police said a 19-year-old Cottage Grove teen was walking on the 300 block of Wisconsin Avenue at 1:34 p.m.

The robber threw the teen to the ground and took her purse, according to the report.

Police said the teen's face hit the pavement as she went down, but she was not seriously injured.

Mondre D. Hegwood, 30, was arrested in the 100 block of South Henry Street on Wednesday on suspicion of robbery with the use of force.

W. Gilman St. bar avoids phone call scam

W. Gilman St. bar avoids phone call scam

A scam-savvy business owner was able to detect a caller's fraud attempt last week, Madison police said. 

Madison police said a person called the Blue Velvet Lounge on West Gilman Street at 6:19 p.m. Friday claiming to be with MG&E. The caller told the bar owner that the business was behind on payments and that the owner must pay $745 immediately or service would be cut off in 2 hours.

The bar owner called the real MG&E and a company representative told him to contact police. 

A Madison officer called the scammer's number, 888-681-5444, and spoke to a person who identified himself as Larry Anderson. The suspected scammer claimed to be with MG&E's "billing interruption service," police said. 

The Madison officer identified himself and asked to speak with the suspected scammer's supervisor, but when the officer's call was transferred to another line, it rang several times and disconnected, according to the report. 

Organization takes on racial disparities in incarceration

Organization takes on racial disparities in incarceration

The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families' “Race to Equity” report indicates that Wisconsin, and particularly Dane County, may have the worst racial disparities in incarceration in the nation. MOSES, a Madison-based interfaith social justice organization, is working to fix that.

In fact, it may go even farther than that. Amy Pooler, a leader in MOSES, said, “Dane County has the worst racial disparities in incarceration rates of African American rates in the country, and that means in the world, because the U.S. already incarcerates more of its population than any other nation on Earth.”

Robber orders employee at State Street store onto ground

Robber orders employee at State Street store onto ground

A masked and armed robber is still at large after robbing a store on State Street on Tuesday night, Madison police said.

Officers were sent to a report of an armed robbery at the Life is Good Store at 514 State St. just before 7:30 p.m., according to a release.

The robber ordered the store clerk onto the floor at gunpoint, reached into the till, took an undisclosed amount of money and fled in an unknown direction, officials said.

The female store clerk was not injured.

The robber is described as a black man in his 30s, 5 feet 7 inches tall with a chubby build. He was wearing a dark coat, dark jeans, dark shoes and a dark scarf covering his face.

Police: Drunken homeless woman beats sleeping man with metal crutch

Police: Drunken homeless woman beats sleeping man with metal crutch

Police said a drunken homeless woman beat a man with a metal crutch in downtown Madison early Thursday because she wanted his sleeping spot.

The Madison Police Department said Loretta D. Manuel, 38, is homeless and is one of many who sleep on the streets downtown. Early Thursday morning, Manuel wanted to sleep out of the wind in a spot near the front doors to the City County Building on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. But a 53-year-old homeless man was already sleeping there.

At 3:15 a.m., Manuel reportedly grabbed an aluminum crutch that belonged to another homeless person, began yelling and violently striking the man in the head. Police said the man tried to block the woman's blows and was able to get up and get the metal crutch away from the alleged attacker.

A man nearby heard the kerfuffle and called 911; police who were inside the City County Building were able to respond quickly, according to the report.

Police: Angry boyfriend attacks homeless man on N. Frances St.

Police: Angry boyfriend attacks homeless man on N. Frances St.

A homeless man suffered bumps and bruises after he was attacked in downtown Madison Sunday night, according to Madison police.

The Madison Police Department said a 44-year-old made small talk with a woman on the 500 block of North Frances Street at about 9:15 p.m.

The man told police that an angry man who was thought to be the woman's boyfriend came over to where the 44-year-old was located and punched him, according to the report. The woman and another couple also punched the man. 

The 44-year-old told police he thought a woman fired a BB gun at him. Police said no BBs or pellets were found at the scene.

A witness saw the man getting attacked and said the assailants fled as the witness approached.

The report said the man was was not able to provide good descriptions of his attackers.