Millions of people use Facebook to connect with others and brag about their accomplishments. This is great, unless those accomplishments are criminal in nature. Then those proud photos are just evidence. Here are five criminals who would have gotten away with it, if it weren’t for that darn ‘Share’ button.
The Gas Thief
Michael Baker of Kentucky thought it would be a good idea to siphon gas from a car. A police car. He might have averted arrest, had he not shared a photograph of himself committing the crime while flipping an obscene gesture with his hand. Police easily identified him from the Facebook picture, and Michael was jailed for theft.
Benjamin Rutkowski and Kai Christensen of Utah must have been feeling particularly mean when they planted deadly traps inspired by medieval torture devices on a busy hiking trail. Thankfully, nobody stumbled into one before the men were caught. Someone witnessed the pair chatting about the traps over Facebook, and alerted the police.
Maxi Sopo of Seattle managed to defraud several area banks of $200,000. He took his ill-gotten gains and took off to Cancun, where he might have been able to live like a king for a while, but Facebook happened. Sopo unknowingly friended a law enforcement official, who quickly located the fraudster through his near-constant stream of shared photos.
The Casual Diamond Thief
19 year old Jonathan Parker of West Virginia broke into a woman’s residence and stole two expensive diamond rings. He wasn’t in too much of a hurry, though, because the woman later saw that Parker had logged into Facebook on her laptop — and had forgotten to log out. It wasn’t long before he was apprehended, and the woman’s rings were returned.
What Was He Thinking?
Chris Crego of New York got into a bar fight. It happens. But when he didn’t show up for his court hearing, police discovered that he had skipped town! Crego soon learned that it’s a small world when you update your Facebook to reflect your new location, employer’s name, your work hours, and even an old wanted picture from back home. He was quickly escorted back to New York.
The takeaways from this are (A) don’t commit a crime; and (B) if you do, don’t post about it on Facebook!