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Phil & Mel In The Afternoon

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Nicole Glass Photography/Shutterstock

I know what you’re thinking. Shouldn’t the headline say ‘Florida Man Uses Riding Mower As Getaway Vehicle In Two Crimes?’ That’s what I thought but this story actually comes to us from Iowa. A Waterloo, Iowa man used the unlikely getaway vehicle for a pair of thefts. And it worked. Well, for a while anyway.

The suspect, James Harrington, was caught on surveillance video holding items from a garage break-in, not far from the scene. According to the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, the vehicle he fled in or, rather, on was a John Deere riding mower. Because nothing runs like a Deere.

Later, Harrington snatched a bottle of Absolut Vodka from a convenience store. Again, he was caught on camera. Harrington was eventually caught and we now know why he’s been tooling around on the mower. His driver’s license is suspended until 2024.

This story reminds me of another Iowan who chose a riding mower as his primary mode of transportation. Alvin Straight, the main character in the 1999 Disney film The Straight Story, drives a John Deere 110 Lawn Tractor from his home in Laurens, Iowa approximately 240 miles to Mount Zion Wisconsin, where his estranged brother lives. It’s a great movie starring the late Richard Farnsworth and Sissy Spacek. Here’s the trailer:

The Straight Story (1999) HQ Trailer

An old man makes a long journey by tractor to mend his relationship with an ill brother.