An Oregon man has pleaded guilty to stealing $700 that his daughter had raised selling Girl Scout Cookies — and then using it to pay for an “erotic massage,” The Miami Herald reports. He then staged a robbery to cover up his actions.
Brian Couture, 40, called 911 on March 6, reporting a burglary at his suburban Portland home. When police arrived, they found a ransacked home, complete with blood strewn about. Couture said that he had been attacked by the burglar. In addition to the damage to his home, and to himself, approximately $700 was missing from a jar. That money had been raised by Couture’s daughter, as she had been selling Girl Scout Cookies.
The injured Couture was taken to a nearby hospital, while neighbors back in his neighborhood were shaken by the alleged burglary, as Portland’s KGW-TV reported in March. One neighbor said that she was afraid to be in her own home, and had doubled up on security measures as a result. “We put sticks in all of our doors and I started setting the alarm during the day because I was afraid to be home by myself during the day,” this neighbor told the station.
Couture’s story soon fell apart, however. A police dog failed to pick up any suspects, and the story that he told the cops had “inconsistencies.”
After police confronted Couture, he confessed that he’d stolen the money, and had staged a burglary to cover up the theft. He also admitted that he used the money to pay for an “erotic massage.” It remains unclear, as of this writing, when and where the so-called “erotic massage” took place.
In late March, Couture pleaded not guilty. However, this week he changed his mind, and pleaded guilty to filing a false police report. He was placed on probation, was ordered to perform 80 hours of community service, was fined $100, and was ordered to pay restitution to the Girl Scouts. How much he’ll have to pay will have to be determined by the courts at a later date, but a spokesperson for the Girl Scouts confirmed that the agency was short $740 in cookie funds.
In a statement, the organization said that it is aware of this crime, and is following procedures to get their money back.
“At this time, Girl Scouts of Oregon and Southwest Washington is following our normal procedure to collect on funds owed. The stewardship of Girl Scout troop funds is a top priority for our organization, and that is our focus in this matter.”