Victim turns to Facebook in hunt for brazen burglar
Crimewatch: Web 2.0-style
A London resident who fell victim to a brazen burglar has enlisted social networking site Facebook in a bid to hunt for the cheeky crook.
Jackie McGeown said the man tricked his way into her apartment block before robbing electronic goods from three flats in the building. Builders were working in the back garden of the house, but the crook bluffed his way past them by making them a brew and even offering them snacks from his victims' properties.
"The builders described him as 'the nicest man you could meet'. He spent half an hour with them, made them all a cup of tea and even offered to make them a sandwich," McGeown told Sky News.
While the workers were taking a break, the unidentified burglar busied himself with breaking into one of the flats where he stole keys to the other properties. He robbed all the apartments stealing consumer electronics and goods - including laptops, jewellery, iPods, and even a flat-screen TV - which he loaded into two stolen suitcases.
The suspicions of the builders were alerted after the crafty crook said goodbye to them, claiming he was off on his holidays. One of the builders took a picture of him on his mobile phone, which was passed onto McGeown.
Using this picture, McGeown created a new group on Facebook called DO YOU RECOGNISE MY BURGLAR?. "I use Facebook quite a lot, and I thought it would be a modern way to catch a burglar," McGeown said.
Users with tips on the possible identity of the burglar can pass on leads via Facebook. McGeown said: "Maybe he's burgled you. Or maybe you've poked him on Facebook. If you know who he is, let me know!" ®
The burglary took place around midday on Tuesday, 31 July, right around the time Facebook had to temporarily suspend its service following a security breach. Coincidence? We think so.
Re: pedants corner
Wrong. In the UK, it used to be burglary only if the person broke into a house by night with the intent of committing a felony. It still is in the USA. But not nowadays in the UK.
The clumsy phrasing is because I'm paraphrasing the OED.
Inre: Nick Cholerton
"Robbery is theft from a person with violence (or the threat thereof). This individual burgled the flats, he did not rob them."
I'll take your pedantry and run with it... it's not actually burglary if it doesn't happen at night.
I know who it is.....
John Tickle - Formerly of Big Brother fame turned Brainiac....
Arrest that man.