Example: [Ananova, May 2007]
The panicked woman alerted authorities as the car drove off, and police set up road blocks and dispatched patrol cars to intercept the vehicle.
But when the car was finally sighted and stopped, police found the "boy" was actually dwarf car mechanic Klaus "Shorty" Mueller, 27.
He had climbed in the boot and asked to be driven around so he could see where a strange rattling noise had been coming from.
Police in the northern city of Bremen confirmed a woman had called after she looked out her apartment window and saw a child in the boot — just before the driver slammed it shut and drove off.
The spokesman added: "A major investigation and manhunt was immediately launched and the car and its driver were apprehended. It seems the driver had been worried by inexplicable rattling noises in or near his boot. He called a mechanic, who was very small, and who climbed in the boot to get to the bottom of the problem."
Police said the mini mechanic had often used the same method to solve the problem and had found it the best way to detect the source of strange noises.
Origins: The story about Klaus "Shorty" Mueller, the half-pint German mechanic mistaken for a tot in the process of being kidnapped, appeared in a handful of print publications at the end of May 2007 as a "weird news" item. While there exists the slight possibility that the tale might be true, it is likely better regarded as a slightly expanded version of an urban legend that has been around since the
In this version from 1982, the mechanic in the trunk is not a dwarf and thus not mistaken for an abducted child. Instead, it's his two legs sticking out from the back of the car that arouse suspicion:
Barbara "das boot" Mikkelson
Last updated: 20 June 2011
Alpert, Lukas "Weird But True." The New York Post. 31 May 2007 (p. 29). Brandreth, Gyles. The Book of Mistaikes. London: Futura, 1982 (p. 136). Parsons, Denys. Funny Ha Ha and Funny Peculiar. London: Pan Books, 1965. (p. 11). Ananova. "Dwarf Mechanic Mistaken for 'Abducted' Boy." 30 May 2007. [Glasgow] Daily Record. "Rattled Cops Find a Dwarf." 31 May 2007 (p. 22).