Electric car owner Kaveh Kamooneh was arrested and detained for 15 hours for stealing about 5 cents of electricity from his son’s middle school.
Kamooneh had plugged an extension cable from his Nissan Leaf into an exterior outlet at Chamblee Middle School in Georgia while watching his 11-year-old boy play tennis, according to The Verge and originally reported by Atlanta’s 11 News.
A police officer appeared and told him he was going to charge him with theft for taking power from the school. Sure enough, police arrested Kamooneh at his house 11 days later and made him spend more than 15 hours in jail.
Although original police records say that he stole between $US10 and $US25 of power from the middle school, experts have confirmed that by juicing his car for 20 minutes, Kamooneh used about 5 cents of electricity.
Kamooneh acknowledges he hadn’t asked permission before plugging in his Nissan, but claims that there was no one around to ask, as it was a Saturday morning. Chamblee Police counter that he had been told in the past that he wasn’t allowed on the school’s tennis courts without permission (apparently due to interfering with the use of the courts during school hours).
Kamooneh likened his actions to plugging in a laptop or cell phone at a coffee shop or other public outlet. His arresting officer, however, maintains that “a theft is a theft.” Kamooneh plans to fight the charges.
Like there’s been debate about laws for dealing with Google Glass on the road, rules for charging electric cars without consent are hazy.