Eagle-Eyed Detective Thwarts Inmate's Theft Of Jail Spork Valued At Two Cents

After completing a jail sentence, a Florida woman left the Manatee County lockup last month with a smuggled memento of her time behind bars.

In a Facebook post, the woman wrote, “just a pic of a souvenir I picked up on my 6 month vacation.” Next to that caption was a photo of a spork, the spoon/fork hybrid used by inmates during jail meals. In a subsequent message, the inmate noted that, “it wasn’t easy to get out with me….that’s for sure!!!”

What the inmate, whose last name is Jones, did not anticipate was that her Facebook page was being monitored by Detective Todd Zink of the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.  

According to a police report, Zink tracked down Jones and asked if she “had taken something with her when she left jail.” Jones fessed up to nicking the spork and apologized to Zink. “I asked her if she would return it in exchange for not filing charges and she did so on 1/6/15, leaving it at the Guard Shack as I requested,” the cop reported.

Alas, the recovered cutlery--which Zink valued at two cents--did not return to service since investigators did not know how Jones “transported the spork out of jail.” As a result, the detective marked the utensil as a “biohazard” and “put it into Property and Evidence to be destroyed."