By Adam Frisk, Global News
A man in Oregon is accused of staging an elaborate home invasion in an effort to cover up his theft of more than $700 from his daughter’s Girl Scouts cookie sales.
According to Forest Grove Police, officers responded to a 911 call on March 6 for a possible break-and-enter and assault.
Police said Brian Couture, 40, placed the emergency call just before 10 a.m. and reported an unknown individual had entered his home through a sliding glass door. Couture said he engaged in a struggle with the alleged suspect before the apparent intruder fled from the home and officers arrived, police said.
A police K9 unit was dispatched to search for the suspect, causing panic for some area residents.
“There were cops from all over, dogs, the forensic team, they had crime scene tape up everywhere,” Brooke Gwin told KGW8 News. “We put sticks in all of our doors and I started setting the alarm during the day because I was afraid to be home by myself during the day.”
Officers said when they arrived to the home, they found Couture unresponsive.
“There’s a distinct difference between being unconscious and being unresponsive,” Forest Grove Police captain Michael Hall told the news station, without disclosing what injuries the man may have suffered.
Turns out there was no home invasion, according to police. They claim Couture staged the entire situation.
“Couture admitted to Forest Grove Police investigators that the alleged incident was staged,” the police department said in a statement. “Investigators believe that Couture staged the incident in order to conceal the theft of money belonging to a non-profit organization, that was spent inappropriately.”
The organization was the Girl Scouts of America. A spokesperson confirmed to KPTV News that Couture is the father of a Girl Scout and approximately $740 of cookie sales were unaccounted for.
“Since the March 18 arrest in this case, we have been in contact with the Forest Grove Police Department and are working with them to resolve the matter,” the spokesperson said in a statement. “At this time, Girl Scouts of Oregon and Southwest Washington is following our normal procedure to collect on funds owed. The stewardship of Girl Scout troop funds is a top priority for our organization, and that is our focus in this matter.”
The father was arrested for making a false report and theft.