Kaveh Kamooneh parked his Nissan Leaf electric car outside of Chamblee Middle School in Georgia while his son played tennis. He plugged it into an outlet by the parking lot to charge while he watched his son play. A few moments later, a police officer told Kamooneh that he would be arrested for stealing electricity. And sure enough, eleven days later, the police came to his home handcuffed him, and charged him with theft. That’s the story according to Kamooneh.
The Chamblee Police Department has a slightly different story. The police say Kamooneh was actually the one playing tennis, not his son, and wasn’t apologetic when confronted about using the electrical outlet.“It doesn’t matter. He broke the law. He stole something that wasn’t his. … A theft is a theft,” Sgt. Ernesto Ford told reporters.
Charging a car like the Leaf at a normal outlet for 20 minutes would consume about $.05 worth of electricity.
Whichever you believe, the fact remains that a man spent a night in jail for plugging his car into an outlet at a public school, much like one might plug a phone into an outlet say, well, anywhere. From what we can read into the case, it seems the real crime Kamooneh committed was not being apologetic enough when he was confronted by a police officer.