PUNTA GORDA — A 16 year-old female on Tuesday reported to the Punta Gorda Police Department that her backpack had been snatched as she walked through Punta Gorda. After being read her perjury warnings, the juvenile provided a sworn, very detailed, statement of a man riding a bicycle and grabbing her backpack. Due to the seriousness of the situation, Punta Gorda Police detectives and patrol officers immediately began a search for the suspect. Upon further investigation, detectives learned that a man meeting the description found the backpack lying on the side of the road and turned it into his employer when he arrived at work.
After being questioned again about the details and timeline of events, the juvenile admitted to being in a fight with her boyfriend, throwing her backpack on the side of the road and walking away from it. When asked why she made up the story, she advised she did not want her mother upset with her for losing her backpack and items within. Due to the amount of resources exhausted in investigating the reported robbery, the juvenile was placed under arrest for misdemeanor offenses of false reporting the commission of a crime and perjury while not in an official proceeding. The juvenile was subsequently released to her parent with a court date.
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