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BLOTTER TALES

Emergency! There’s somebody else’s cardboard box in my recycling bin!

A Wilmington resident called police to report cardboard that did not belong to him was left in his recycling bin.
A Wilmington resident called police to report cardboard that did not belong to him was left in his recycling bin.Sutisa Kangvansap

Every day, police officers respond to reports of all sorts of events and nonevents, most of which never make the news. Here is a sampling of lesser-known — but no less noteworthy — incidents from police log books (a.k.a. blotters) in our suburbs.

ABSENT-MINDED HOCKEY FAN

On Dec. 26 a man told Gloucester police that someone stole his Boston Bruins sweat shirt while he was working out at the Cape Ann YMCA on Middle Street. “He was not sure who would have taken the sweat shirt,” the police report stated, “but did see some kids running around while he was in the locker room.” The man told police the Bruins sweat shirt “was of sentimental value,” and he “did not want to accuse anyone without having proof, but would like the sweat shirt back.” The officer said he’d reach out to the Y to see if there was any surveillance video that could solve the mystery. But that turned out not to be necessary. An hour later, the Bruins fan called police and said he wasn’t the victim of a larceny after all, because he found his missing sweat shirt. He told police he’d been wearing it under his vest the whole time, and he’d forgotten that he put it on.

RECYCLING BIN DRAMA

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Police departments have to deal with all kinds of calls, from serious emergencies to the most frivolous of complaints. The following call likely falls into the latter category. At 7:27 p.m. Jan. 9, Wilmington police got a call from a resident of Middlesex Avenue who reported “a discarded cardboard box that doesn’t belong to him” was in his recycling bin. The station officer was advised and the information was logged.

SELF-DRIVING CAR

Police officers never know what’s going to happen when they make a traffic stop, and have to be ready for anything. Such was the case when Brookline police pulled over a vehicle in the wee hours of the morning on Jan. 2. Police said that as the car was pulling over, the driver suddenly jumped into the back seat where two other passengers were sitting. But he apparently forgot to put the car into park, because the vehicle kept rolling forward with no one in the driver’s seat. The quick-thinking officer put the parking brake on before ordering the three people out of the car. “The officer brought the vehicle to a halt before it crashed into anything,” said Deputy Superintendent Michael Gropman. “No damage to the vehicle or surrounding neighborhood, no one was injured; overall a pretty heroic effort on the officer’s part.” A 39-year-old Dorchester man was charged with operating under the influence of liquor, operating to endanger, failure to stop for police, and operating an unregistered motor vehicle, according to police.

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COFFEE COMPLAINT

At 2:29 p.m. Jan. 11, a police officer in Peabodywas flagged down by a man who had Trump flags on his vehicle. The man told the officer that while he was driving through the parking lot of the Northshore Mall “an unknown person threw a cup of coffee at his vehicle.” The incident was noted in the log.

MUST HAVE BEEN RELIEVED

At 12:48 a.m. Jan. 4, Bridgewater police got a 911 call from a resident who said he locked himself in his room because there was someone inside his house. But it turned out not to be a prowler. According to a tweet by police, the caller realized it was just his father returning home.

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Emily Sweeney can be reached at esweeney@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @emilysweeney.