On March 27 of 2012 at 9:30 PM, Clint Earl Sims walked into the Madison County Jail to turn himself in. Mr. Sims had a history of run ins with local law enforcement (which included vandalizing the county courthouse in 2007), so the clerk on duty that day had no reason to doubt Mr Sims' word that he had committed a crime.
The problem with this seemingly forward act of contrition, however, was that it was based on an empty confession. When deputies checked his records, there were actually no outstanding warrants for Mr. Sims whatsoever.
When the police told Sims that they had no reason to place him in jail, he responded with a chilling and grammatically dubious response: "You will have in a minute."
And yes, I am fully aware/ashamed of how ironic it is
that I am making a joke about bad grammar. Shut up.
Sims then calmly walked over to a gumball machine in the prison lobby (they have those?), picked it up, and walked out of the building. Just in case stealing a gumball machine wasn't a good enough crime to get him locked up, Sims took a short walk over the the Criminal Justice Complex and broke the glass out of the front door and a side window.
Sims returned to the jail and was promptly arrested on charges of burglary, felony vandalism, and theft of property.
There are still two unanswered questions that surround this very bizarre case:
1. Why did Clint Earl Sims want to break into jail? According to Sheriff David Woolfork, Sims has relatives in the area, but no friends or family that he knows of that are currently in the Madison County Jail.
2. Why the heck does a jail have a gumball machine in the lobby? Think about it: Most citizens visiting a jail are going to report a crime, getting arrested for a crime themselves, or visiting a loved one who is locked away. Who wants to pay 25 cents for a terrible piece of gum in those type of circumstances.
Also consider that gumball machine can't be a huge moneymaker for the department as far as vending machines go. And even if it was, the guards, clerks, and support staff that work at the jail should probably have higher quality vending machines or be able to receive gumballs for free. But I digress...
Clint Earl Sims is currently residing in the Madison County jail on the charges listed above. There is no information available on a trial date, but something tells me Mr. Sims isn't in a rush to have his day in court.
...or to ask the guards for a piece of gum.