‘Someone had a lot of leftovers’: Mashed potato bandit terrorizing Mississippi town as some residents fear poison traps

Residents of a Mississippi neighborhood are perplexed – and a little anxious – about mysterious bowls of mashed potatoes being left on mailboxes, front yards, and in at least one case, inside someone’s car.

Sebastian Bjernegard, a resident of Jackson’s Bellhaven neighborhood, told the Associated Press that he nearly stepped into a bowl of mashed potatoes earlier this week. But he wasn’t about to sample a spoonful.

“I have a three-second rule, so I didn’t touch it. But some people were worried,” Bjernegard said.

“Some people were thinking maybe the mashed potatoes were poisoned to kill animals,” he added.

Bellhaven resident Michaela Lin told WLBT that she wasn’t sure what to think when her neighbor pointed out a bowl sitting a top her mailbox.

“As I walked out of my door my neighbor said, ‘What is that on your mailbox?’ And I said ‘Umm.. It looks like a bowl of mashed potatoes,” Lin said. “I had no idea what to think when I saw it!”

Lin told the news station that she later learned through social media that someone else had found a bowl inside their car. She also noted that several of the potato recipients have ties to a Bellhaven school.

Perhaps because the neighborhood is known for creative pranks — as Jordan Lewis told Associated Press, it’s not unheard of to find Christmas trees placed in potholes — no one has yet reported a starchy surprise to police.

“[W]e don’t know if someone is just playing a prank or if someone just had a lot of leftovers,” Lewis said.