Review Category : Busted

Shopkeeper Uses Facebook to Nail Thief

the-jointThis certainly isn’t the first time that Facebook has been used to catch a crook, and we’re pretty sure that it won’t be the last.

After two men broke into a head shop in Boston, the store owner posted a surveillance video of the break-in on the store’s Facebook page. One of the thieves can be seen in the video stealing a $4K glass tube.

Within a few days, the video had 6,000 views and the store’s online community managed to recognize one of the thieves. The police made an arrest soon after. Meanwhile, the police are still working on identifying the second suspect.

(Via Technorati Lifestyle)

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Security Firms Busts Fire Starter Using Video Surveillance

fire-videoAfter finding scorched carpet hidden under a strategically placed filing cabinet, BrickHouse Security employees turn to their own surveillance system to figure out exactly what happened. What they found was a cover up scandal engineered by the managers of their cleaning company, MD Building Services.

“All it takes is one spark to start a fire that can engulf a whole room in less than 15 minutes,” said Joe Hardiman, a BrickHouse Security employee and 20-year veteran of the Rockland County volunteer fire department. A statistic that Hardiman and the other 11,500 New York City firefighters see all too often. Little did Hardiman know that he would be citing this very statistic when explaining the potential disaster that he and his fellow coworkers faced at BrickHouse Security after a cleaning crew sparked an avoidable fire in their office.

The source of the fire was a vacuum cleaner whose frayed cord was taped together with non-electrical tape. All it took was one spark to ignite the cord and the newly installed carpet. What’s even worse? The cleaning company, MD Building Services, tried to cover up the scorched (and potentially smoldering) rug with a nearby filing cabinet to avoid blame. The office is located in a high rise building that houses commercial offices as well as over a thousand residents.

“The fact that the cleaning crew used a nearby filing cabinet to cover up the scorched rug to avoid blame is not only irresponsible, it’s down right foolhardy,” stated firefighter Hardiman. “When you install a rug, you use cement that contains volatile organic compounds, which can hugely increase the fire’s potential for survival and eventual re-ignition. By covering the fire’s source, the cleaning crew compounded the danger to the office and the residents of the apartment building by a hundred fold.”

The severity of the situation was revealed 13 days later when the filing cabinet was moved and the scorched rug was revealed. The security company referred to its surveillance tape and found all the evidence they needed to approach MD Building Services with the problem. “The tape shows the fire, the supervisor Luciano visiting the office to assess the damage, Luciano on the phone for over two minutes obviously speaking with his manager who in this case is Michael Redrup. The next part of the tape jumps to the filing cabinet miraculously moving 2 feet to cover the spot where the fire took place,” said Todd Morris, CEO of BrickHouse Security. “I knew I had to confront them about the potential danger they inflicted upon my office and the many residents of this building.”

When Morris called in MD Building Services Manager Michael Redrup and the cleaning crew’s direct supervisor Luciano, he began by asking them if they knew where the burn mark on the rug came from. Both Luciano and Redrup spent over three minutes crawling on hands and knees explaining that they had “no idea what it could be” and after inspecting the burn spot and concurring that it was probably from a “cigar or cigarette.”

“I asked them what would happen if something like that happened on a cleaning shift, and who would the cleaning crew potentially notify. They explained that the cleaners are instructed to call their direct supervisor (Luciano) who in turn is supposed to call his manager, in this case Michael Redrup,” explained Morris. “When I asked them if the cleaning crew had indeed called them in this case to alert them of the problem, both employees of MD Building Services insisted that they had not been notified.” Then Morris showed the two MD Building Services employees the video tape, clearly placing Luciano at the scene on the phone with whom is probably his manager, Michael Redrup.

“At first, Luciano tried to tell me that he was on the phone with another client, not indeed his manager. When I told him that we’re a security company and even have devices that can forensically determine who he was talking to, his tune changed.” Both men replied “it was bad judgment.” When the owner of MD Building Services, Michael Carlin was asked about the incident, he also responded that it was “bad judgment.” Carlin was unavailable for further comment.

No, this is not just a case of bad judgment. This is a case of reckless endangerment and it could have meant a fire severe enough to engulf the entire office as well as the adjoining office buildings. The combination of poor judgment, the use of shoddy equipment, and the blatant cover up attempt puts MD Building Services in a very poor light that should make any office owner wary of hiring this company.

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NYC Taxi Driver Gets Busted for Hacking Meter Prices


Have you ever taken a taxi ride and suspected that the meter was going faster than it should be? You’re suspicions might have been correct if you were ever a passenger of Wasim Khalid Cheema. The Brooklyn taxi driver is said to have hacked his taxi meter in order to routinely charge his passengers double the fare. It’s estimated that his meter hack stole a total of $40k during a 6 month period.

“(Cheema) has a pattern of deceiving passengers in a manner which is clearly against the best interests of the public,” a city administrative law judge wrote in a decision against him last month. “Members of the riding public must be able to trust that taxicab drivers will … be honest.”


Taxi cab driver, Wasim Khalid Cheema

After passengers complained, investigators used the GPS tracking technology installed in all NYC taxi meters to determine that Cheema was actually charging riders the rate reserved for trips to Nassau and Westchester counties.


(Via AMNY)

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Famous Jewel Thief Doris Payne Caught Stealing Again at Age 79

Doris Payne

Doris Payne

79 year old Doris Payne was arrested in 2005 after being caught on a security camera stealing a $30K diamond ring from Neiman Marcus at the Stanford Shopping Center. It turned out that Doris was actually lifelong criminal whose exciting exploits had traversed the globe. Her story even made it’s way to Hollywood where it became the subject of a movie starring Halle Berry. The movie, entitled, “Who is Doris Payne?” is scheduled to be released later this year.

Now it seems like they’re going to have reshoot the ending of the film. Just a few months after having completed her prison sentence, Doris is suspected of steeling a $2,300 Burberry trench coat at Saks Fifth Avenue. It might not have been as expensive an item as most of her previous thefts were, but because Doris is still on parole, it doesn’t look good for the aging criminal.

(Via the LA Times and Mercury News)

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Surveillance Camera Catches Aid Stealing from Disabled Woman's Purse

article-1243989-07e3d4e3000005dc-92_634x286Lorrain Andrews, a severely disabled women in Bristol, England, knew something was awry when money from her purse kept going missing. Because Lorraine can’t even get out of her bed without help, she knew that she would need help to catch the thief in the act. As a result, she set up a surveillance camera inside her home.

The camera ended up recording her aid, Jane Hoy, stealing from her purse and rugsack a total of 8 times in just a period of a little over two weeks. Lorrain suspects that during the past year or so, over 2000 pounds have already been stolen from her.

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Thief Says He Was Trying to Save Animals' Lives

310073_gTwenty one year old Dustin Archibald was caught on camera in Denham Springs, Louisiana, stealing a decoy camera. A land owner had set up the decoy camera after several of his digital game surveillance cameras were stolen from his property. Dustin fell into the land owner’s decoy trap, and he was subsequently caught on camera stealing with a “No Trespassing” sign visible in the background.

Archibald claims that he was not stealing the camera, but  rather taking it so the landowner would not be able to hunt deer in the area. Unfortunately, with the property owner’s photographic evidence from his surveillance cameras, Archibald was identified right away and he consequentially turned himself into authorities.

(via WAFB)

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Mix Tape Used to Lure Thief Back to Scene of the Crime

mix_tapeIn Seattle last week, a man was caught on surveillance camera stealing cash, liquor and food from Loretta’s Northwesterner restaurant. When the store’s manager, Mike Poetzel, arrived at the scene of the crime, he discovered that the thief had left behind a Mix cassette tape labelled “Summer of ’86”.

This gave Mike an idea. “I grabbed the security camera footage and was processing it and I was listening to the tape on my tape deck while I was working on the video,” he said. “So I got to know the songs, so I picked a couple that would fit.” Mike took some of the songs on the mix tape and dubbed it on to the surveillance footage of the man robbing the store, and he then uploaded his creation to YouTube. Mike hopes that someone on YouTube will recognize the thief. “It’s a positive way to deal with a negative situation,” Mike Said.

On the other hand, the store’s regular patrons hope that the nostalgia of the mix tape will be able to lure the thief back to the scene of the crime. “Maybe he’s missing it. Maybe he’ll come back to get it,” said customer Dara Elish.

(Via Komonews)091124_80s_thief

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Cop Caught Red Handed in Red Light District

_46792238_gmpvest226A police officer in Manchester, England was recently relieved of duty after he failed to complete his duties. Turns out he was visiting the city’s red light district while on duty.

Robert Bowen, 45, was a normal traffic cop who one day decided to ignore an emergency call because he was indulging himself in the city’s red light district. When his absence was noticed, his superiors decided to track the officer’s car using cameras, audio recordings, and GPS. When they found out that he was cutting out on calls to go to the red light district he was let go. Officer Bowen had been working for the police force for 26 years and had been the recipient for numerous medals. In court he plead guilty to one count of misconduct in public office.

During his career he received the chief constable’s commendation and two chief superintendent’s commendations for going beyond the call of duty, but now he is simply the cop that got caught.  Detective Inspector Martin Reddington, of the Greater Manchester Police, said: “This serious neglect of duty could have had devastating consequences as he potentially put the lives of members of the public at risk and also those of his colleagues, who had to rush to the scene from other parts of Manchester, delaying our response and leaving the areas those other patrols were supposed to be looking after vulnerable.”

(Via BBC News)

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Sister Act Becomes Reality When Nuns Chase Down Purse Thief

nunPolice are hoping that they will find a criminal responsible for robbing two nuns by releasing video footage of the crime.

The two nuns were doing some grocery shopping when they were approached in a parking lot by a man asking for money. One of the nuns, named Sister Mary De Leon, refused to give the man money and instead referred him to many of the town churches for help. However, the suspect had other things in mind, as he snatched De Leon’s purse and jumped into a van that was circling the lot. The two nuns attempted to chase the crook, but where unable to stop the vehicle.

Luckily the whole thing was caught on tape by the parking lot security camera. Police have released the footage of the crime in the hopes that someone will help bring these heartless men to justice.

(Via ABC News)

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