Taking Watermelon From Field = Time Behind Bars?

Stealing a $3 watermelon could mean jail time for a North Carolina county's board of commissioners candidate.

53-year-old Dana Soles was charged with felony larceny of ungathered crops after admitting he plucked the watermelon from a farmer's field. Soles is running for the Chowan County Board of Commissioners.

Soles said he was delivering groceries Aug. 21 to the family of an unemployed former colleague. He said he took the watermelon after hearing the field would soon be tilled, and later admitted the heist to a sheriff's deputy.

Assistant District Attorney Michael Johnson said he wasn't familiar with the case, but said the offense has been on the books since 1811. It carries a maximum sentence of 30 months in prison.


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