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April Fools: World’s Most Unsuccessful Criminals

Have you ever read a news story about crime and found yourself shaking your head in disbelief? Do you ever hear of a sentence handed down from a court and wish they’d just throw the book at him? After all, criminals don’t just cost their victims heartache and money, they increase costs for all of us by making products more expensive than they might be otherwise.

It may make you feel better to know that some criminals do a better job punishing themselves than a rusty, medieval device ever could. These are people who are just not happy being anonymous, so they leave a trail of bread crumbs to ensure their brilliance is appreciated. Here are a handful of recent examples:

Burglarize a cop’s home, gain unwanted attention – Some criminals focus on targets of opportunity, like the elderly, while others consider that just plain unsporting. But when you break into a cop’s house and said cop arrives home while you’re there, you won’t get away clean or easy. The police officer held one of the burglars inside his Kansas City home, but the two others fled. The officer’s call for help brought a surge of law enforcement resources into the neighborhood, where all three men were taken into custody.They’ll certainly think twice now before pilfering a police officer’s place.

Social Media Gone Wrong – Aren’t people who feel they need to wish the Facebook community “good morning” every day annoying? Save status updates for the truly important things! A robber in New York City announced his intentions 45 minutes prior to robbing a bank, and changed his online name to that of his idol, the notorious bank robber Willie Sutton. To make sure all his friends knew about his latest “achievement,” he posted pictures of himself holding a wad of hundred dollar bills – the proceeds of his heists.

Don’t steal on an empty stomach – Apparently, even thieves need to refuel. One would think to grab a granola bar along with that big-screen TV – anything that can be eaten on the go – but this robber had a taste for something a little more savory: bacon. While he was frying up the tasty treat, the rightful homeowner returned and caught the burglar’s Top Chef performance. We’re pretty sure the bacon was confiscated as evidence, though it probably disappeared by lunchtime.

“False alarm, ignore our drugs!” – Even criminals hate being victims of crime, so one couple made sure to equip their drug house with a burglar alarm. Too bad the alarm was accidentally tripped, causing the police to investigate. When officers entered the unlocked residence to check for a prowler, they made an even bigger bust. The owners had left their marijuana, cocaine and drug paraphernalia in plain view and were arrested and charged.

One horse getaway – When you see a reckless driver, you get the license plate and phone the police, right? But what if it’s a buggy with only an orange reflective triangle on the back? Police in Leon, N.Y. chased an Amish teen who ran a stop sign, but the Victorian-era horse carriage was no match for a 250-horse Crown Victoria. The teen flipped the buggy over into a ditch and was charged with – among other offenses – underage possession of alcohol and over-driving an animal.

It’s frustrating to know that everybody has to spend more due to criminal activity: More in taxes to support crime fighting, higher prices for goods we need and greater insurance premiums. At the same time, it’s good to know that your insurance helps protect you from the anarchy of the aftermath created by the bad guys, and every once in a while, the criminals provide us with a good laugh.