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Brazen Oakland Park thief takes entire cooler of ice cream, is arrested

jpierre@MiamiHerald.com

Broward County Police apprehended a man on Wednesday suspected of stealing a Good Humor ice cream cooler from an Oakland Park Chevron gas station.

Dennis Norman, 25, who moments before the robbery looks up to extend his middle finger at surveying cameras, was arrested and charged with grand theft, police said.

Surveillance footage shows a “swaying and spitting” man walking into the store at 4:09 a.m. April 2 through the rear parking lot. After minutes of browsing around, he notices the gas station attendant, Beauvais Guisman, sleeping behind the counter.

In the video, Norman is seen cautiously pushing the ice cream cooler away from the register –– and from a slumbering Guisman, who is just inches away behind a window, police said.

Approximately 15 minutes later, Norman pushes the storage bin, valued at $2,500, through the store’s doors, police said. Police believe that Norman fled the same way he entered the store –– on foot.

Police spokeswoman Gina Carter said police had reason to believe that Norman was a member of a nearby gym who lived in the area.

They later confirmed that Norman frequented the Zoo Gym Health Club, located next door to the gas station. A cross-reference of registered members gave detectives Norman’s identity and address. Police made the arrest minutes away from his home at a drive-thru convenience store.

“When detectives finally found [Norman], he told them that he already knew why [the police] were there,” Carter said.

Carter added that, according to the video, it appeared that Norman was going to make a purchase, but –– maybe out of frustration or defiance –– decided to take the cooler.

After his arrest, Norman told police only that he tossed the cooler aside after he left the store, police said.

“[Norman] said that he doesn't remember where he disposed of the cooler,” Carter said. “But at some point, he took the ice cream inside the cooler and stored it in his freezer at home.”

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