Accused Panty Raider Pinched in New Mexico
Monday, January 17, 2005
November 22, 2004
There's something about northwestern New Mexico when it comes to underwear thieves.
Last January, as reported in Out There, a 13-year-old boy was caught in Kirtland after a trail of ladies' undergarments led from a broken-into store straight to his home.
Nearly a year later, police in nearby Farmington announced a big break in another case involving five months of panty raids.
"This isn't something like tools or articles of value," Detective Sgt. Steve Burch told the Farmington Daily Times. "This is something someone is putting in their closet or something like that."
Since Aug. 8, there have been at least 28 cases of women's underwear being burgled from area homes. Also taken were jewelry, electronics and cash.
On Jan. 8, a woman and her 15-year-old son came home to find a strange man in the woman's bedroom.
"Words were exchanged between the 15-year-old son and the suspect, who fled the residence on foot," Burch detailed.
The boy lost track of the suspect, but cops staked out a suspicious car and arrested Everett Hanova, 34, when he returned to it. The woman and her son identified Hanova as the man in their home.
Police say a search of Hanova's Farmington apartment turned up 217 pairs of women's underwear, as well as 24 bras, two pairs of shorts, a skirt and an evening gown.
Hanova said nothing to police, who booked him on unrelated charges while awaiting more evidence from the burglary cases.
Burch figured many more local underwear thefts had been unreported by residents too embarrassed to go into detail.
"I encourage people to go to police anytime something like this occurs," he said. "It's unusual ... I would be more alarmed by someone like that than a burglary for profit."