Not only are some banks too big to fail. Some convicted criminals are too big to jail.A 600-pound Florida man with a long record of scamming restaurants and convenience stores pleaded no contest this week to five charges that he sought refunds by making false claims, including one that a $50 order of beef jerky from a 7-Eleven was moldy.Seminole County Sheriff's Office George Jolicoeur, who has a long record of scamming restaurants and convenience stores, weighs 600 pounds. Authorities decided he was too fat to jail.
The no-contest plea was the best prosecutors in Seminole County could hope for. If they had brought him to trial, the state would have had to pay to transport him to the courthouse from the nursing home where he's been bed-ridden for months. It would have also been obliged to pay for any medical care he might have needed.So they struck a deal with lawyers for the accused man, George Jolicoeur, 38. If he pleaded no contest to five counts of petty theft, he wouldn't go to jail or serve probation. "He's in his prison cell," Assistant State Attorney Kyan Ware said, the Orlando Sentinel reported. "He's not getting out of that bed."
The case began in 2007, when the 7-Eleven owner complained to police about Jolicoeur's bogus refund attempt. When Officer Jeff Sabounji went to Jolicoeur's home in Sanford, near Orlando, to arrest him, he heard what sounded like a male voice trying to sound like a female saying Jolicoeur was not home. This was followed by a female voice saying, "George, turn yourself in."On his way to the police station for questioning, according to the police report, Jolicoeur told the officer, "The beef jerky got me." Jolicoeur was arrested two months later for a similar scam at another 7-Eleven in which he put a gallon of ice cream on the counter and said he had 10 of them that were damaged, for which he received a false reimbursement of $50.Since his 2007 crime spree, Jolicoeur became ill. He was eventually transferred from a hospital to a nursing facility, where he breathes with the help of a respirator.In 2005 he pleaded no contest to five similar crimes.
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