Garage Mechanic Charged With Battery

NORTH AURORA, Illinois – Garage Mechanic Charged With Battery

Garrett Nelson should be at work at Bates Auto Body in North Aurora, Illinois, but instead, he’s in a holding cell with bruised knuckles and a sprained ankle.

Aurora Beacon-News’ local crime reporter, Peter Lazenby, discovered the 38-year-old Nelson sitting by himself in the holding cell, and decided to strike up a conversation.

“It was obvious he had gotten into a fight,” said Lazenby.  “He was pretty bruised up.  I told him I was a reporter and he said he knew my name because he reads my ‘Pete’s Beat’ police blotter column.  Our talk turned into an interview, so I ended up doing a human-interest story on him.  Turns out this guy really has led an interesting life.  Also the fact that a mechanic was charged with battery – I mean the thing practically wrote itself!”

Lazenby shared a section of the conversation with Empire News.

Peter Lazenby:  Do you mind if I ask what happened?

Garrett Nelson:  I took a swing at a guy who was trying to tell me how to do my job.

PL:  Where do you work?

GN: Bates Auto Body on River Road.

PL:  How did the fight start?

GN:  I promised to have this guy’s car finished by 3:00, but things got backed up since a school bus packed full of singing nuns broke down right in front of the shop.  I spent about 2 hours fixing them up, so then the guy comes back and asks me how come his car isn’t ready.

PL:  Did you tell him about the singing nuns?

GN:  Yeah, but he said it wasn’t his problem.  He was this suit-and-tie guy, on his phone the whole time, kinda rude.  Then he says he had a cousin who’s a mechanic and I was working too slow.

PL:  Why didn’t the guy just go to his cousin?

GN:  That’s what I asked him and it kind of ticked him off.  I told him we had a waiting room, but he said he’d rather ‘keep an eye on me out here.’  That’s just how he said it:  ‘keep an eye on me.’  Well, that really frosted my ass.  What did he think was I gonna do?  Take a dump in his car or something?  So he keeps on staring, and the next thing I know, I’m swinging at him; he’s swinging at me — he calls the police, but guess who gets stuck in here — me!”

Barrett was charged with simple battery and was confident he would be released soon.

“One customer who comes in to my shop all the time with his hybrid, he’s a lawyer, so I called him up,” said Barrett.  He brings his car in at least once a month.  God, those hybrids are crap on 4 wheels!  Anyway, I heard him say something about ‘dropping the charges,’ so I think I’ll be out of here soon.  The guy who I took a poke at left about a half hour ago.”

Barrett was released an hour later in a better mood than when he arrived.

“Hey, am I gonna be famous?” he joked, limping out of the police station.  “I never thought I’d be reading about me like this!  I might turn into a big-time celebrity!”

“Careful what you wish for!” answered Lazenby.

Lazenby’s full article will appear in this Sunday’s Beacon-News as a special feature to ‘Pete’s Beat.’



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