Homeless Man Facing Years Behind Bars for Underpaying for a Mountain Dew by 43 Cents

by Courtney Blackann
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In a state that follows a strict three-strikes rule, a homeless man is facing seven years behind bars for underpaying for a Mountain Dew at a convenience store.

Joseph Sobolewski, 38, went into a store in Perry County, Pennsylvania and grabbed the soda. He put $2 on the counter and left. The store was having a “2 for $3” special on their 20-ounce Mountain Dew bottles, so most likely, the man assumed his money was enough for the one soda. However, the purchase was actually $2.29, making him 43 cents short (with tax).

A clerk from the store followed the man outside to let him know he didn’t pay enough for the soda. However, the man reportedly drove off Fox News reports.

The convenience store then called the police and Sobolewski was arrested. He was jailed on a felony charge for violating the state’s three-strikes rule. He’s now facing years of jail time for his misstep. He’s being held on a $50,000 bond.

“For me, I would get the deterrent factor if someone’s thefts were getting worse or higher in value,” said Brandon Flood, director of the state’s Board of Parole, according to PennLive. “But the lack of discretion is what bothers me. It’s problematic because it doesn’t factor in the amount.”

Prior Petty Crimes

Prior to this incident, Sobolewski has several convictions for minor crimes. Two of these break the three strikes law for retail theft. In December 2011, Sobolewski stole a pair of shoes from K-Mart. They were priced at $39.99. At the time, the man was arrested and served three months in jail. He also paid an exorbitant amount of fees for the crime totaling almost $1,000. Prior to this, the Pennsylvania man stole a tank of gas from a gas station.

Before the soda incident, Sobolewski and his wife were accused of stealing craft supplies from a Hobby Lobby.

Homeless Woman Gives Birth Outdoors

While being homeless can sometimes cause people to commit minor crimes, it’s also a dangerous way to raise children. While many people are actively trying to resolve the homeless problem, it’s not always easy. Unfortunately, this is the case of a German woman.

In the middle of a frigid winter, the 20-year-old woman gave birth in Nuremberg in February. She was discovered by law enforcement officials snuggling the infant outside of a subway station. She reportedly gave birth around 5 a.m. without any medical assistance.

After the officer discovered her, he acted quickly. He drove the woman to a local hospital to make sure she and her newborn received proper medical attention. There have not been any follow-up reports about their current status.

Outsider.com