It’s fairly obvious that the vast majority of criminals aren’t exactly what you’d call intelligent people. So, it takes quite a bit for somebody to be called a particularly dumb criminal, and these are 15 of the very dumbest.
(Don’t) Call Ahead
Daniel Glen is a guy who liked to knock off convenience stores, but unlike most of the other geniuses who partake in similar exploits, he had a peculiar modus operandi. He wanted to be sure that there was enough money on hand to make the trip worth while, so he called the store clerks ahead of time to get a count of what was in the register. Then he had them get the money ready in bags for him to collect. Somehow it never dawned on him that this was a quick way to get caught.
No Running with Sharp Objects
Apparently nobody ever told this guy that it wasn’t safe to run with sharp objects. An unnamed dimwitted thief had the bright idea to rob a Meijer store in Western Michigan. His intended booty: Knives. The genius shoved $300 worth of hunting knives in the waistband of his pants and took off running when employees confronted him, but before he could make his way out of the store he tripped and fell — stabbing himself.
The Crack was Whack
If you buy something and the product turns out not to be of the expected quality, it’s only natural to want to either return it or get your money back, right? In the case of Eloise Reaves of Hawthorne, Florida, it was not the brightest move. Eloise had just purchased some crack cocaine from a local dealer, and when she discovered that it wasn’t very high quality stuff she decided to take the matter to a passing police officer. She complained to him that she had been ripped off by the dealer, showed him the crack and expected him to correct the matter. He arrested her.
The Writing’s on the Wall
There’s an unwritten rule in committing a crime that says one should never sign his name at the scene of a crime he just committed, especially not on the wall. It’s unwritten because it’s common sense, and only an idiot would do something so, well, stupid. Peter Addison, of England, is just such an idiot. After he and his friend thoroughly vandalized a building at a children’s campsite, the 18-year-old Addison felt the urge to scrawl his name on the wall, along with the name of his “gang” — the Adlington Massiv (yes, really).
Return to Moron
Quinton Thomas was spending some quality time in a Maryland prison for armed robbery when he decided to write a special letter to a buddy of his on the outside. He knew that at that particular jail, the guards only screened incoming mail, not outgoing — so he kindly suggested that his friend seek out and kill anybody planning on testifying as witnesses at his upcoming trial. Whether he screwed up his friend’s address or affixed the wrong postage isn’t known, but the letter was sent back return to sender and became incoming mail. The rest of the story is as it should be.
Sorry, We’re Closed
Liberty, Pennsylvania must breed a special type of criminal mastermind, because 28 year-old Christopher Allen Koch tried to rob a bank there that was closed. He had apparently overlooked the bank’s hours, so when he pulled up and parked his car at 11:40 am, he was in no hurry to rob the place. He sat for a full 20 minutes before heading toward the front door wearing a ski mask and holding a gun at 12:01 in the afternoon. The bank closed at noon, and the employees reported him on the spot.
Demetrius Robinson wanted to rob a Golden Pantry store, but he had a problem. He already entered the store, but needed to buy some time until he was able to be alone with the clerk, so he asked for a job application. Not a bad idea, except that he filled in his real name and provided his real uncle’s phone number.
No Thelma and Louise
Ah, California. Krystal Evans and Denise McClure were a couple of gals on a mission when they were arrested for destruction of evidence. They had the bright idea to rifle through a DHL truck, find their urine samples before they were shipped off to the lab for drug analysis, and destroy them before sneaking away. Unfortunately for the girls, it’s hard to be sneaky when you’re on meth. Not only were they caught, but they had to surrender a second set of urine samples — which tested positive for meth. The ironic part is that the first samples were actually clean.
Just Sleep it Off
A German burglar made the safe choice after celebrating his most recent robbery with a bit too much champagne, and decided to sleep it off in his car on the side of a road outside Dusseldorf. Passers-by called the police when the noticed the figure of a man slumped over behind the wheel of the parked car, and when officers arrived they couldn’t believe their luck. The man had been wanted for a string of robberies, and he still had stuff in his car from the robbery he had just done that very night.
How Not to Rob Your Own Workplace
Christopher Kron thought it might be a good idea to rob the restaurant where he was an employee, but he didn’t bother to put any actual thought into the caper. He showed up after hours one night and broke into the building. In doing so, he tripped the very loud alarm, but he didn’t bother to try turning it off. When the security company called the establishment, he answered the phone and gave his real name. After hanging around for a while longer, he finally decided it was time to leave — but all he took with him was a bottle of Grand Marnier and a beer. Not feeling completely finished yet, he showed up for work the very next day, where a fellow employee immediately identified him to the police after having watched the surveillance video from the night before.
Murder, He Wrote
In a bizarre twist on an old classic, Polish writer (and murderer) Krystian Bala was arrested in 2003 when his novel, Amok became a best-seller. Apparently, police officers who had read the book had realized that a murder portrayed within it bore striking resemblances to an unsolved case that had been on the books since 2000. After some investigating, it turned out that the deceased in the real-life case was involved with Bala’s ex-wife, and the cops closed the deal.
Bested by a Granny
46-year-old Robert Horsley thought he was going to break into the apartment of a 95-year-old woman and make off with all her ancient jewelry and mattress-cash. What he found instead was a tenacious old woman in a wheelchair, armed with a screwdriver and a lifetime of oh hell no. The guy broke the window of her front door, and tried reaching his arm inside to unlock the chain. She stabbed his hand and forearm repeatedly with the screwdriver until he gave up and tried running away — but the cops found him passed out on the front porch, suffering from blood-loss.
World’s Fastest Repeat-Offender
So you just got out of jail after a short stay for misdemeanor trespassing, but you don’t have a ride home and you’re too broke to buy a bus ticket. What’s a guy to do? Well, if you’re Frank Singleton, you walk into the jail’s parking lot and you carjack somebody. Unfortunately for Frank, he didn’t know how to drive stick, so he sat there feeling like a dumbass until the cops made their way across the lot to arrest him — this time for a felony.
World’s Greatest Dad
First of all, that is the actual t-shirt that Randy Lewis was wearing when he was arrested under charges of drunk driving and child endangerment. He took his three kids with him on a beer-run one night in Tennessee, got himself sloshed to three-times the legal limit, sorted some cocaine, then handed his 10-year-old the keys to the car and sat in the passenger seat. The kid wrecked the car and super-dad was taken away in cuffs.
The Facebook Burglar
Here’s a tip for any would-be criminals out there: If you’re robbing a house, don’t log into any of your social networking profiles on the victim’s computer, and certainly don’t leave yourself logged in. That’s exactly what mega-genius Jonathan G. Parker did when he was robbing a Pennsylvania home last year. Needless to say, it didn’t take long for the cops to get ahold of him.