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12/14/2013 10:57:00 AM
Waldoboro Police Capture Runaway Gingerbread Man

Waldoboro Police Chief Bill Labombarde captures runaway Gingy the Gingerbread Man as he attempts to free his cousins, the croissants, from Dunkin' Donuts in Waldoboro Dec. 14. (D. Lobkowicz photo)
By Dominik Lobkowicz

The runaway gingerbread man known as "Gingy" has been captured and safely returned to the kindergarteners at Miller School, according to Waldoboro Police Chief Bill Labombarde.

Students generally agree Gingy first arrived at Miller School when he was delivered by Santa Claus after the Thanksgiving break, but none could remember exactly when Gingy first went missing.

The kindergarteners took his disappearance hard; some believed the students themselves prompted Gingy to leave.

"He left because he didn't think we were a good class," David Creamer said solemnly.

Carson Crabtree claimed Gingy left because the kindergarteners were not enough fun, and Gingy was seeking more fun in other grades at the school.

Peyton Eaton believes Gingy's motives were somewhat more selfless. "I think he tried to find us when we were outside. He tried to search for us, but he never found us," Eaton said.

The kindergarteners put up "missing" posters and enlisted the help of the Waldoboro Police Department in a search for Gingy.

When Labombarde returned Gingy to the kindergarteners the afternoon of Dec. 14, he said his capture of Gingy happened by chance.

"This morning I was getting my cup of coffee at Dunkin' Donuts and who do you think I saw among the doughnuts?" Labombarde asked the children.

Some kindergarteners look happy, others shocked as runaway gingerbread man Gingy is returned to them on Dec. 13. (D. Lobkowicz photo)
Some kindergarteners look happy, others shocked as runaway gingerbread man Gingy is returned to them on Dec. 13. (D. Lobkowicz photo)
"Gingy!" the kindergarteners cried.

According to Labombarde, Gingy allegedly admitted his actual purpose for running away during an interview back at the police station.

"He was trying to free his cousins, the croissants," at Dunkin' Donuts, Labombarde said. Gingy then asked for a lawyer and refused to answer further questions, Labombarde said.

"I appreciate you guys caring enough about the gingerbread man to put out what we call an all-points bulletin," Labombarde said to the students.

One kindergartener said the classes would soon be making gingerbread men cookies.

"I would keep a very close eye on him [Gingy] when you start to make gingerbread cookies," Labombarde cautioned, referencing Gingy's most recent caper and his attempt last year to free another relative, a cookie named Chip, from Moody's Diner.

As of Dec. 13, the hallways of the school remained plastered with posters sporting Gingy's name and likeness, but both the posters and eye-witness reports from the students varied prior to Gingy's return.

One of the many "missing" posters hung in the halls of Miller School as part of the kindergarteners' search for Gingy the Gingerbread Man. (D. Lobkowicz photo)
Gingy was generally described as a brown gingerbread man with a white chef's hat, but students were hard pressed to agree on other details of his appearance.

Jason Pickett said Gingy wears three buttons, which his classmate Wyatt Hammer described as pink, green, and red.

Creamer said Gingy had a band-aid on his right foot, which Heaven Luce confirmed. Luce said the band-aid had a word on it, but could not recall the word. "I think it said Gingy," Peyton Eaton said, but Sophia Harvey believed the word was "orange."

Eaton also said Gingy had black, round eyes.

"And he doesn't have a nose," Brandon Thompson said.

Harvey disagreed. "He did have a red nose," she said.

Several students said Gingy was last seen wearing a scarf, which Gabby Truong said was blue in color.

At the time of his capture, Gingy did have the pink, red, and green buttons, the band-aid - which said "ouch," black eyes, a red nose, and a multicolored scarf.

During the time he was unaccounted for, intelligence shared from other classrooms had placed Gingy in the band room where he first played an instrument and subsequently got stuck in a saxophone, according to students and staff.

Gingy was also spotted at Friendship Village School, Luce said, adding she was certain he traveled there on foot.

Luce said Gingy's known associates are also his family members: Santa and Mrs. Claus and the others elves at the North Pole.

After returning Gingy, Labombarde said he was not sure of Gingy's lineage, but confirmed he was "a habitual runaway" and sitings were confirmed in Waldoboro and Friendship.

"I do know he's well sought-after in the kindergarten classes," Labombarde said. "They do love him dearly."

Labombarde praised the kindergarteners for their help in the investigation.

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