How popular is hockey in Canada? So popular, it seems, that if you're planning to break into a store to steal beer, you disguise yourself as a goalie.
The suspect was wearing goalie pads, blocker and trapper and carrying a goalie stick. But besides the skates, however, there's just one piece of the uniform this beer thief forgot.
"He was wearing everything but a [goalie] mask," Russell police Corporal Brett Church told the Winnipeg Free Press about the incident that occurred the morning of August 15.
Church said the suspect was wearing a ski mask instead to obscure his face, so identifying the perpetrator might be difficult. The man's gait, however, might give some clues. Church said the no-good netminder held his hockey stick "in his weak hand. . . like he's walking in a goalie stance." Thus, Church said: "He must be a goalie."
The official news release about the crime, which was released last week with the surveillance footage, begs to differ, however.
"He may have been a defenceman or forward in disguise as he was wearing jersey #17 - a non-traditional number for goalies," it said (via the CBC).
Whatever position this robber might play, his love for hockey might explain why he had an accomplice. Just as you can't win a hockey game by yourself, it turns out you also can't steal three cases of Budweiser alone either. Perhaps to save the goalie's stick, the accomplice used a rock to break the glass so that the two could enter the store around 3.30am.
The crime has proven so absurd that even the store's manager isn't all that upset about what happened.
"I just laughed out loud," Jean Betke told the Free Press when she saw the surveillance video.
Russell natives, including Jon Montgomery, who won a gold medal at the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver in the men's skeleton event, are even proud of the incident.