BROOME COUNTY, N.Y. (Gray News) - When a New York homeowner found John S. Mehne naked in his chicken coop Tuesday afternoon, he had no idea the kind of mischief state troopers said he’d been up to that day.
At 9:45 that morning, troopers responded to a crash on Interstate 81, near the Pennsylvania border. They found a 2016 Audi that had been reported stolen in Sarasota, Florida.
Investigators determined Mehne was the one who crashed the car, but he wasn’t around when they got to the scene.
That’s because he reportedly got out and tried to climb on the back of a slow-moving van.
Not deterred, Mehne reportedly found another vehicle to hitch a ride on. He climbed in the back of a pickup and rode it until the driver pulled to the shoulder of the road.
Troopers said he jumped out the back and darted into a nearby wooded area.
Investigators searched the woods but didn’t find any trace of Mehne. They caught a break around 4 p.m. when the homeowner reported seeing him in his chicken coop.
The homeowner told investigators he asked Mehne what he was doing, to which he responded “killing the chickens.”
Mehne then reportedly picked up an ax and chased the homeowner before stealing an ATV. Authorities later found the ATV abandoned.
Multiple law enforcement agencies formed search parties that included K-9 units. Still, they relied on another tip to find Mehne.
Another caller reported seeing Mehne naked in their chicken coop. Authorities found him and took him into custody, largely due to one of the police dogs sinking its teeth into Mehne’s flesh.
He was treated at the Binghamton General Hospital before being taken to the Broome County Jail.
As the investigation got deeper, troopers learned Mehne also allegedly burglarized another home, tampered with the deck of another and killed a family’s dog.