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National Briefing / And Finally . . .

Promise of free clothes turns ugly

October 15, 2009|TIMES WIRE REPORTS

A woman in a rented limousine told everyone at a Burlington Coat Factory store that she'd won the lottery and would pay for everyone's purchases, police said in Columbus, Ohio. Customers called their friends, who flocked to the store, but a riot ensued when it turned out to be a hoax.

Police Sgt. Lt. Michael Deakins said angry customers threw merchandise around and looted.

"Everybody was like, 'I still want my free stuff,' and that started the riot," Deakins said. "It looks like Katrina went through the store."

Linda Brown -- who hadn't won the lottery -- had driven away by then. But when the limo driver didn't get paid either, he turned her in to police.

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