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Flinging oatmeal gets man in hot water with law

Published Aug. 28, 2005

Christopher Dale Perry didn't want anyone to eat his oatmeal.

So when he thought a woman planned to munch some of the cereal Monday afternoon, he became upset and threw a 3-pound bag of uncooked oats at her chest, authorities alleged.

Citrus County sheriff's deputies later arrested Perry, 27, of Dunnellon on a charge of battery on an elderly person. Perry was taken to the Citrus County jail, where bail was set at $5,000. He later was released after posting bond.

The victim is 67 years old. Perry is dating her daughter, said Perry's father, Dale. The Sheriff's Office did not release the woman's name.

When deputies arrived at 2263 W Austin Drive, Dunnellon, about 2:30 p.m. Monday, they found the victim's hair, face and chest coated in oatmeal flakes. Uncooked cereal covered the dining room floor, according to an arrest report.

Perry told deputies he ripped the bag of uncooked oats in half and threw it in the air after the woman told him she was taking the cereal.

"No, you're not taking my food," Perry said he told the woman, according to the report. He told deputies the bag didn't hit the woman.

But the woman and two witnesses _ Perry's sister and the woman's daughter _ told a different story.

They told deputies Perry and the victim weren't on good terms. The two had argued earlier, they told deputies, and the oatmeal assault was unprovoked.

Indeed, the victim hadn't said a word to Perry when he came into the house, she and witnesses told deputies.

The victim told deputies she was having slight chest pains.