There aren’t many ways to explain why a man would allegedly steal $10 and a car for two hours. However, explanations abound when crack cocaine is reportedly involved.
On Saturday at roughly 5 a.m., a woman called the Muskego Police Department to report that her boyfriend had stolen her vehicle from her home on Janesville Road. Two hours later, she called police back to report her boyfriend had returned the van, but had taken two $5 bills, and charged $20 to a credit card, according to a criminal complaint filed with the Waukesha County Circuit Court.
Her boyfriend, 31-year-old Menomonee Falls resident Joseph Benton – who also goes by the name Joseph Grassold – admitted to taking the vehicle, the report states. He told police he had smoked “copious amounts of crack cocaine” over the past 24 hours and knew his girlfriend wouldn’t let him take her van. He decided to take it regardless.
Though the report states Benton admitted to stealing the van, he did not admit to taking the two $5 bills. However, police found two $5 bills in his possession.
Benton was charged Monday with one count of identity theft, one count of operating a motor vehicle without the owner’s consent, and one count of bail jumping. If prosecuted to the full extent, he could spend over 7 years in jail and be charged $30,000.
Benton was charged in Oct. 2012 with driving a vehicle without owner consent, and theft of movable property worth more than $2,500. A condition of his bail was not to commit any new crimes or possess drugs or alcohol.