Dad Grows Beard, Mistaken for Kidnapper

You can have a beard. You can have a child. But be careful having both. Just ask Torkel Kristoffers, a 39 year old dad from Stockholm who was arrested for sporting a beard and playing with his son at the same time.

Kristoffers – who is typically completely shaven – decided to grow out his beard after taking some time off of work to look after his two year old son Axel. One afternoon while the father and son played together outside, the toddler asked his father to carry him to his friend’s house in a burlap grocery bag, to which Kristoffers obliged. The toddler was happy. The father was happy. The neighbors assumed it was a kidnapping.

Wait, what?

Instead of wondering if Kristoffers had done something different with his hair, neighbors instead jumped to the obvious conclusion that a bearded stranger was casually abducting Axel in a burlap shopping bag, and called the police. According to reports, Kristoffers’ neighbors didn’t recognize him with his beard, and assumed Axel was being kidnapped by a random person who happens to carry reusable grocery bags around with him so he can scoop up neighborhood kids, but still be green and environmentally friendly at the same time. Hipster kidnappers, am I right?

Minutes later, police burst into Kristoffers’ home and arrested him, but he was luckily able to explain and diffuse the situation. He even kept enough of a sense of humor about it to post to his Facebook page a picture of his beard with the caption, “When two police cars run into my coffee time, we know that it’s time to shave the beard.”

According to reports, police confirmed that “It is currently not a crime to carry a child around in a bag.”

Oh, but I can’t build a shed in my backyard without getting permits first?

Growing a righteous beard certainly can make a man seem like a whole new person, but do we really need to take it to the “If you see something, say something” level? Can’t a guy sport a full healthy beard without the awesomeness of it blinding everyone around him to his true identity? Can’t neighbors refrain being idiots? And, also, borrowing things and never giving them back? (You still have my rake, Randy.)

So beardsman with wee ones at home, bear in mind that any facial hair changes you want to make should be run by your neighbors first, lest you want to have the cops called on you for teaching your kid how to throw a baseball in the front yard.


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