Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Felony Warrant Army Deserter Apprehended Wearing Thong While Also in Possession of Spare Panties

Officers also found him with panties stuffed in pocket

A 21-year-old man wanted by the U.S. Army for desertion was arrested in Boulder over the weekend.

In a strange twist, he was found wearing a woman’s thong and had three pairs of women’s underpants stuffed in his shirt pocket.

Boulder police said they received an anonymous tip Saturday that Christopher Mauger, who has a nationwide felony warrant for desertion, could be found in an apartment unit at 770 29th St. in Boulder.

Police went to the apartment around 4 p.m. and caught Mauger, who was wearing Army camouflage pants, at the back of the building trying to climb down to the ground from the deck.

Mauger — who Army officials say is from Centerport, N.Y. and was undergoing basic training at Fort Benning, Ga. — told police that he left the base while he was on leave and didn’t plan on returning. Then he tried to run away, according to an arrest report.

Two officers took Mauger to the ground and told him that he would be Tased if he didn’t calm down, police said.

At that point, Mauger stopped resisting and allowed himself to be handcuffed, though he continued to try to pull away from the officers as they took him to their patrol car, police said.

He was ticketed for allegedly resisting arrest, a misdemeanor, and taken to Boulder County Jail. Jail staff found three pairs of panties in Mauger’s shirt pocket and said he was wearing a woman’s thong underneath his boxers. He refused to tell jail staff where the undergarments had come from and why he had them, police said.

It’s also not clear why Mauger was in Boulder. No one answered the door Monday at the apartment building where he was found by police over the weekend.

Edwin Fernandez-Cruz, an assistant investigations clerk with the U.S. Army Desertion Information Point at Fort Knox in Kentucky, said Monday that Mauger had been declared “absent without leave” by the Army on Jan. 7. He had enlisted in the service in early October.

Mauger had gone home to New York for the holidays, returned briefly to Fort Benning, and then left on Jan. 6 without authorization, Fernandez-Cruz said. He is a soldier with E Company, First Battalion, 19th Infantry at Fort Benning. Fernandez-Cruz said the Army put a warrant out for his arrest on a charge of desertion on Feb. 6.

He said Mauger will likely be sent to Fort Sill in Oklahoma to face disciplinary proceedings.

“They will most likely kick him out of the service,” Fernandez-Cruz said.

But first, Army officials from Fort Carson in Colorado Springs will need to get Mauger, he said.

Dee McNutt, a public affairs officer with Fort Carson, said Monday they have not yet received a request from Boulder to pick up the soldier.

Mauger, who is being held at the Boulder County Jail, also faces a misdemeanor charge of resisting arrest.

Sarah Huntley, a spokeswoman for the Boulder Police Department, said she is not certain which charge will take priority.

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