Motorist looking for something to steal finds dead man in car trunk

A passer-by looking through an idling car he saw in a ditch in east Houston found a man’s body in the trunk, authorities said.

The man, identified as 28-year-old Donald Michael Lapointe of Houston, had been shot at least once in the chest, and his face was swollen and cut as if he had been beaten, said Jack Harvey, a homicide investigator with the Houston Police Department.

A bag of pills was found stuffed inside his pants.

The passer-by found the body about 4 a.m. Monday at 12800 Nimitz near Normandy.

He was driving with his wife and their 4-month child when he spotted a gold, four-door car nose down in the ditch.

The car was running and the windshield wipers were on.

Harvey said the passer-by told investigators he looked through the car for something he could take. Then he grabbed the keys from the ignition to look for stereo speakers in the trunk.

When he opened the trunk he found the body.

The passer-by drove to a nearby gas station and called 911.

Harvey said the passer-by and his wife are not a suspects in the killing.

The investigator said it appeared Lapointe had been shot elsewhere, placed in the trunk, driven to the area and left where he was found.

The car has not been reported stolen.

Investigators have no suspects or motive in the shooting.


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Teen Tries to Steal Soda, Gets Stuck in Vending Machine

A 17-year-old boy got in way over his head when he tried to steal a soda from a vending machine and became stuck in the machine’s receiving slot.

Police said the incident happened around 5 a.m. Saturday morning at the trolley station on the west end of 22nd Street in National City.

The teen – who police said is a student at Sweetwater High School — stuck his arm into the receiving slot of a vending machine in an attempt to steal a soda and got wedged inside the slot, according to authorities.

A trolley rider spotted the trapped teen and called police.

Firefighters, police, paramedics and trolley security all showed up at the scene to assist in getting the high school student out of the Coke machine.

After a failed attempt to get the keys for the soda machine, authorities determined they had to take the rescue up a notch and began using axes to chop at the sides of the vending machine.

When that method failed, rescuers tried using crowbars – also to no avail.

Authorities then requested a fire engine with saws and hydraulic tools. They used a rotary saw and air chisel to dismantle the vending machine and eventually, the teen was extricated from the tight opening.

The entire rescue took about an hour, police said.

Medics at the scene treated the teen for scrapes and soreness to his arm caused by numerous attempts to free himself.

The teen was then taken into custody by police who said he may face charges for petty theft.

In the end, the teenager never got his soda.

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