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MASSILLON, Ohio (WJW) — Wearing a jumpsuit and cuffs, the Grinch walked into court — his charges stemmed from attempting to steal Christmas for sport. The charges were steep, he faced eight to 20 years, he appeared in front of Judge Eddie Elum, and a jury of his peers.

“You slithered and slunk, with a smile most unpleasant. Around each room, you tried to take every present,” Judge Elum said.

Arrested since Friday last week, the Grinch had no lawyer and did not move to speak.

“He’s been seen serving our veterans, your honor, through the sheriff’s office food drive,” Sheriff George Maier said.

The sheriff claimed the Grinch had a change deep inside.

“I think the most likely reason of all, may have been that his heart was too sizes too small,” Maier said.

WJW photo

Judge Elum looked to the jury, without giving an inch. He bellowed his voice: “Should I release Mr. Grinch?”

The jury exclaimed yes, and Mr. Grinch lost all fear. He was now a free man; his name had been cleared.

“Maybe Christmas Mr. Grinch, doesn’t come from a store,” Elum said. “Maybe Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.”

The Grinch was still green, but he was no longer blue. No more need for jail …

“Because his heart grew,” 5-year-old Alaina Maier said.