This article may not be suitable for reading at work! It is about a very odd fetish and a man who clearly enjoys it.
Early last year, a 27 year old man from Michigan was arrested after taking several vehicles from a General Motors dealer and damaging four of them. He was also accused of “cranking” in another vehicle. This piqued my interest as I had never heard of this.
The term cranking has several meanings:
- It can mean turning the crankshaft of a motor to get it started.
- The ingestion of the nasal decongestant propylhexedrine, used illicitly for its ability to get you high.
- The clever use of speech or a play on words (I’ve never heard of that before either).
- or ….
In this case, it is the mix of the first meaning above and the ability to gain “self gratification” – that’s about the politest way I can describe it. This is done by removing several spark plug leads from a motor and allowing the engine to run very roughly which obviously makes a very large vibration.
What the hero of our story did was to break into the dealership and take the used vehicles out for a drive. They were waiting for repairs at the dealer’s body shop and he took two Silverados, an Equinox and a Tahoe. He managed to damage them further by bouncing off curbs and trying to get them airborne. Police arrested him, he pleaded guilty and served time through probation and he underwent mental assessments. However this wasn’t his only crime and being in custody allowed two other cases to be brought against him, one criminal and one civil.
The civil one is easy – the dealer is suing him for the break and enter plus the damage caused to their customer vehicles. The dealer is seeking $38,000 in damages. It was likely that the dealer would be awarded the amount as our hero failed to respond to the suit in time.
The criminal one reflects the title of the story. Our man has a history of odd behaviour, in fact when he took the vehicles for the joyrides, he was also awaiting trial for cranking in a “county” car – a local government maintenance vehicle. He had a long string of offences to his name and even tried to stand for a political seat in the State House of Michigan under the Republican banner despite having several convictions. His history of cranking seems to last several years.
Back in 2010 he cranked in some vehicles belonging to the Saginaw County Mosquito Control Department and damaged them. He apparently told officials he had learnt about the fetish online. A year later he nicked a police cruiser for a quick crank and then “borrowed” a truck from a company called Scientific Brake for another session. The charges against him for the police car were dropped in a deal to secure conviction on the latter offence and he served 1 year and 8 months.
Now he is in court again for fresh offences. In all cases he seems to have been caught by the security video systems at each location taking the vehicles, so it must be true about the saying that too much cranking affects your eyesight!