Another year, another slew of would-be criminal masterminds who didn’t lack for confidence or boldness – just brains.
Maybe it was the thief who made off with a deep fryer, and was nabbed after police followed his trail of grease.
Maybe it was the group of would-be jewel thieves who were sent slipping and sliding by the freshly-waxed floor of the jewelry store they broke into.
Or perhaps it’s the man who tried to rob a store with a sword – only to find the clerk was carrying a sword of his own.
Here are some of the dumbest criminals of 2015 caught on tape.
The bank robber who didn’t consider theft a crime because he said “please” first (see above)
Dominyk Antonio Alfonseca, 23, is accused of stealing $150,000 from a TowneBank in Virginia Beach, Virginia this past May.
But Alfonseca said he doesn’t consider what he did to be theft, since he used the world “please” in the note he slid to the teller during the hold-up.
The full text of his note reads as follows: “I need 150,000 Bonds (dollars) Right Now!! Please! Police take 3 to 5 minutes to get here, I would appreciate if you Ring the alarm a minute after I am gone… make sure the money doesn’t BLOW UP ON MY WAY OUT :)”
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Call it jewelry theft on ice.
In security footage released by West Midlands Police this past February, four masked men are seen smashing through Gem Jewellers in a stolen Mercedes and ransacking the Coventry, England jewelry store.
But the floor had recently been waxed, leading to some friction related issues.
Carrying canvas bags and axes, the suspects looked like baby penguins learning how to walk on ice as they failed to gain sure footing on the slippery floors.
The tough part about this clip is listing all the ways this would-be ATM thief in Townsville, Australia failed to get away with his crime.
Surveillance video shows the man throwing an object at the automated doors of a corner store, only to have it bounce right back at him.
Once inside, the suspect was seen struggling to attach a chain to the bank machine. However, the man didn’t appear to notice the chain breaking outside of the gas station store.
The suspect got back into the vehicle and drove off… without the ATM attached.
It didn’t take authorities in Oklahoma long to find the culprit who allegedly broke into a woman’s home and stole a deep fryer this past May.
All they had to do was follow the trail of grease across the street to the home of the suspected thief, Steven McCarthey.
According to the arrest affidavit, police followed the “noticeable grease spots” that started from the woman’s home and led to McCarthey’s backyard.
The police found the stolen items hidden around McCarthey’s house, including the deep fryer which was in the utility room above the dryer.
For a few tense, surreal moments, a Pittsburgh corner store was transformed into something out of Game of Thrones this past August.
That’s because a would-be robber tried to hold up the store with a sword only to discover the clerk was armed with a sword of his own.
The unknown suspect holding the sword ran behind the counter to demand cash, and that’s when the store clerk reached for a blade of his own: a full-length scimitar.
And just like that, battle was joined in the aisles of a Pittsburgh corner store – for a few seconds, anyways.
The bank robber who ran past a reporter in the middle of a live report
An Iowa television station was doing a live update on a Minnesota bank robbery in December when police say the suspect returned to rob it a second time.
KIMT-TV employees of Mason City, Iowa, were outside Sterling State Bank in Rochester when a bank employee ran out and pointed out the robbery suspect.
Reporter Adam Sallet broke away from the report, saying: “I have to go. I have to call 911.”
According to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, a masked man walked into the Quick Save in Wheat Ridge, Colorado last January, allegedly with the intent to hold up the store.
How do they know? Because that’s what he told the store’s clerk – after he recognized him.
According to local media reports, the store clerk said the suspect looked at him before exclaiming, “(Expletive), I was going to rob this place, but I know you!”
Surveillance cameras captured the darkly humorous moment the would-be robber recognized the store clerk – and aborted his robbery mid-attempt.
Being busted by police officers is one thing. Being busted by small-town politicians is another thing entirely.
A local news camera was rolling Saturday as a robbery suspect tried to flee from police in a small Wisconsin town – only to be brought down by a pair of local civic leaders.
“He was running right at me, and I just gave him a nice butt into the snow bank and tackled him,” Greendale, Wisconsin Village President John Hermes said. “And then the police were right behind him and grabbed him after that.”
The car thief who snapped a singing selfie inside the truck he had just stolen
Police were able to identify an alleged car thief in Houston, Texas this past February after the man in question posted a video of him singing a Drake tune inside the truck he had stolen.
Unfortunately for him (but fortunately for police) the video was still on Kenneth Davis’ phone, positively linking him to the crime.
Kenneth Davis was charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and burglary of a motor vehicle.
A man is facing charges of theft and resisting arrest after authorities said he crashed a jousting performance at the Colorado Renaissance Festival and tried to make off with a sword.
A witness said the man was chased down by two women in costume at the event this past July.
The women followed the would-be sword thief up a hill and one of them, dressed as a wench, held him in a headlock for about five minutes until her husband, in a knight’s costume, showed up and held him down until security arrived.
…Spurs Jesus, that is.
Cordero Maldonado – better known as “Spurs Jesus”, the unofficial mascot of the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs – was doing some laundry when he discovered another man trying to break into his home through a window this past July.
“I immediately bolted down my stairs and out the back door and hopped the fence and pursued him. I was barrelling down the side of the river going after him,” Maldonado said. “He saw me coming after him and jumping over all these plants.”
“Spurs Jesus” said he has already forgiven the home intruder but the police haven’t. He’s been charged with burglary of habitation.
Once again, Drizzy makes this year’s list of inauspicious criminals.
A suspected car thief led police on a wild chase through downtown Los Angeles Wednesday night. The woman wove through traffic and sped through red lights before police slowed her down with a spike strip.
But the obstacle didn’t stop her completely.
Footage from the incident shows the suspect get out of her car and bop to hip hop artist Future’s latest single “Where Ya At” featuring Canadian superstar Drake.
It is alleged the male suspect entered two different variety stores in Toronto between 2:30 p.m. and 3:15 p.m. on Sunday, April 26.
In both cases, the man walked into each location with a four-pronged cane, waving it at the clerk and demanding money.
After unsuccessful attempts, police said the suspect fled the scene in a red four-wheeled scooter.
-With files from Jenny Sung, Adam Frisk, John Hadden, and the Associated Press