Thurston County Watch

Yelm Police Department

Man Cited After Stealing Keys, Shoving Bananas Down Pants

• Brandon Tandarich, 29, of Rainier, was cited for third-degree theft and is banned from entering Safeway after he stole a set of self-checkout keys, sampled produce and shoved bananas down his pants before placing them back on the shelf, according to the Yelm Police Department. The incidents were captured on surveillance video at about 9:20 p.m. on Oct. 17 and reported to police on Oct. 22. The video showed Tandarich steal two keys that an employee had left on a counter. The keys were for the self-checkout area and allowed access to thousands of dollars in cash, according to the store manager, who also said the keys could be used at other Safeway locations. “(An employee) advised she also had video of the male picking up a bundle of bananas and shoving them down his pants and then putting them back on the shelf in the produce aisle,” the officer reported. “The male also apparently taste tested some produce which he did not pay for. The male took a bite of produce and then placed it back in the display area.” An officer identified Tandarich and a young woman he was with the day after the police report. The woman seen on the video came to the police department Oct. 24 and said she was aware of the theft and could help the officer retrieve the keys, which were then found in her impounded vehicle that had been involved in a crash. The officer returned the keys to Safeway. Later, Tandarich was stopped for a traffic violation. When questioned, he admitted to stealing the keys but said “oh yeah, I don’t know why I did that” when asked about the bananas. He was cited for third-degree theft. 


Student Brings Fake Gun to School 

• Staff members at Yelm High School were shown a short video recorded on Oct. 22 at Yelm High School that showed a student pulling out what appeared to be a black handgun from his backpack and pointing it at someone standing nearby. It was quickly determined by a responding police officer on Oct. 25 that the gun was fake. Subsequent interviews with students revealed the boy who brought the toy gun had planned on returning it to its owner after the two had played with it off of school grounds. There was no malicious intent, according to all involved. The case was nonetheless forwarded to Thurston County Youth Services for review. 


Stolen Vehicle Crashed During Joy Ride 

• At about 10:15 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 24, an officer responded to the 10000 block of Tahoma Boulevard for a report of a stolen vehicle. The owner said he left the vehicle at a nearby park and went with friends to run errands. He advised the officer that he forgot to take his keys with him, leaving them inside the vehicle. The following morning, the missing 2009 Subaru Impreza was located. An officer responded to the field between Killion Road and Mountain View Road near Yelm Avenue West for a report of a recovered stolen vehicle. The owner had spotted it on his way to work. “Upon inspecting the vehicle all appeared to be in order and it was unoccupied,” the officer wrote in a report. “The driver obviously did not see the large wellhead in the middle of the field and collided into it. As such, the vehicle was lodged on the wellhead and a tow truck was required to separate the two.” The vehicle was released to the owner. 


Dedication Plaque Stolen From Church 

• A dedication plaque was reported stolen from United Methodist Church on Thursday, Oct. 24. The plaque read “United Methodist Church 1969” and was made out of brass casting approximately 1 inch thick. The original dedication plaque had been attached to the exterior wall of the building near the entrance. It is estimated that the plaque would cost about $1,000 to replace. 


Officer Tracks Missing AirPods

• A father reported to police on Oct. 24 that his son’s AirPods headphones had gone missing at Yelm High School. The headphones have a tracking mechanism that allowed the father to view their last known locations. The AirPods were last in the 15000 block of Coates Road, but a visit to the address didn’t turn up the missing headphones. The AirPods are valued at $150. There are no suspects. 

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.