A 38-year-old Wisconsin man is behind bars for an extremely bizarre situation that occurred on Tuesday shortly before midnight. Jeremy Van Ert, 38, was charged with retail theft and is currently behind bars on a probation hold. Police claim Van Ert entered a Kwik Trip store and ended up being locked in the beer cooler when the clock struck midnight. Being the bright guy that he is, Jeremy decided there was no choice but to stick it out in the cooler throughout the night even though the store was 24-hours and he could have easily gotten the attention of the store clerk for him to be released.
Maybe Van Ert is really not all there and didn’t know what to do, but most anyone would have banged on the cooler and get anyone’s attention instead of sitting in the cooler and popping open a cold one. I guess everyone is different…
According to Brobible:
It seems like there’s some Greek prefix out there to describe virtually any phobia a person can have, but according to my not-even-close-to-exhaustive research, there still isn’t a word to describe the deep-seated fear of getting locked inside a walk-in cooler or freezer. I’m not sure who’s in charge of naming phobias, but someone should probably get on that.
On Tuesday, a Wisconsin man named Jeremy Van Ert lived many people’s nightmare after wandering into the beer cooler at his local Kwik Stop before the door automatically locked behind him (the store doesn’t sell alcohol past midnight). While many people would panic in this situation, Van Ert managed to remain cool— although it’s not like he had any other choice (insert rimshot here). After assessing his options, he decided there was only one thing he could do: start drinking. And drink he did.
Van Ert reportedly proceeded to drink three cans of Four Loko and an 18-ounce can of Icehouse beer.
Van Ert started the night off with a bottle of Icehouse, but soon realized he was going to need something a little stronger if he was going to make it through the night. Over the next six hours, he proceeded to drink three cans of Four Loko (I apologize if reading the words “Four Loko” just made you involuntarily gag).
While the man may have been living it up while locked in the cooler, he wasn’t actually trapped. The store is open 24 hours a day and police say Van Ert just needed to knock on the cooler’s glass door to get the attention of an attendant.
“The subject found himself locked in the beer cooler, knew that Kwik Trip would not sell him any beer, so he decided to remain in the beer cooler,” Marshfield Police Chief Rick Gramza told WAOW.
Six hours after he entered the cooler, Van Ert was found by another customer.
A customer finally noticed Van Ert inside the cooler around 6 AM before an employee released him from his frigid prison. You might think that’s the end of this story, but we’re just getting started.
Remember when I said Van Ert assessed all of his options? Well, that wasn’t exactly true. The door of the cooler was made of glass and the store is open 24 hours a day, which means that Van Ert could have gotten let out at any point during the night if he’d made an effort. He also left the store without paying for the beer he drank and left behind three cases of Busch Light that were damaged when he knocked them over at some point during his bing.
Police ended up charging Van Ert with a misdemeanor, but I personally think his only punishment should be having to deal with the hangover that comes with drinking three cans of Four Loko.
It would seem that Jeremy wanted to stay in the beer cooler, otherwise, he would have done something to get out. Maybe he was broke and just used it as a convenient excuse to drink for free. My question is why he chose to drink Four Lokos out of everything he could have chosen from. You would think drinking a couple of those would be punishment enough, but I suppose police need to send a message that it’s not cool to stay locked in a beer cooler when there was a way to get out. At least Van Ert has a good story to tell his buddies next time.