10 dumbest criminals ever

While it’s sort of nice to know many criminals are too hare-brained to follow through with their nefarious schemes, it’s also kind of depressing to realise how low the human gene pool goes. These crooks are daft and suck at being criminals. They are sure to leave you feeling like a rocket scientist.

Woman asks cops to test her meth for contamination

Cops at Texas’ Granite Shoals Police Department either had a sick sense of humour or were high on drugs or both. See, they posted a fake Facebook story about Ebola-tainted meth in an effort to catch USA’s dumbest drug user. The post read; “If you have recently purchased meth or heroin in Central Texas, please take it to the local police or sheriff department so it can be screened with a special device. DO NOT use it until it has been properly checked for possible Ebola contamination!” Poor Chastity Eugina Hopson saw the post and in a panic took her sample in for “testing”, understandably afraid that her meth could be, well, dangerous. The cops gladly took it in for “analysis” and took Hobson in for possession of a controlled substance.

Deaf robber couldn’t hear alarm

August 1995 and Klaus Schmidt decided the time was ripe for a bank heist. So he stormed a Berlin bank brandishing a pistol and demanded money –pretty standard so far. However, as the robbery progressed, the terrified staff noticed something off with the criminal’s behaviour, especially the point he was asked if he needed a bag, and he replied, “You’re damn right it’s a real gun!” They realised that Schmidt was stone deaf. Fellow didn’t flinch when one of them set off the incredibly loud alarm, remaining calm and patient apart from the occasional threat. Schmidt was expectedly the only one surprised when cops appeared and took him in. When his brain rebooted later, he tried to sue the bank for exploiting his disability. He lost.

Robber leaves phone number with teller

In 2008, 18-year-old Ruben Zarate demanded money from a shop armed with a gun. But there was a problem—most of the money was in a safe only the manager could open, and the manager wasn’t in. Ruben decided he would try again later. To save himself and everyone else time, he left his phone number so they could call him when the manager returned. First, however, the employees called Chicago police, who arrived and instructed the staff to call the robber. Zarate returned to find officers waiting for him. They engaged in a brief game of shoot-at-me, I-shoot-at-you, which, predictably, Zarate lost and was arrested.

Donkey as get-away vehicle

A key ingredient to a successful heist is not getting caught, and to that end, a get-away plan must be thorough –but a fast one is always better. That didn’t stop a gang from Colombia going for it with a 10-year-old donkey named Xavi they abducted from its owner. This happened 12 hours before the main robbery, so they had plenty of time to look for a car (or really anything but a donkey). The actual heist went pretty well. The three robbed a mini-mart, stealing food and booze. They loaded the loot onto the donkey and prepared to make their escape, but Xavi decided he was not going to be an accomplice. Police were not even aware that a robbery had taken place, but Xavi made so much noise he caught the attention of some nearby officers. The robbers fled on foot, leaving behind Xavi—along with, of course, all of the stolen goods.

Thugs call target ahead of robbery

On March 23, 2010, Albert Bailey and an unnamed juvenile accomplice decided to rob a bank in Fairfield, Connecticut, USA. To streamline the whole thing, Bailey called the bank in advance so they could get the money ready for the two to just walk in, take the cash, and leave. Minutes after the phone call, Bailey sent in his juvenile accomplice along with a note (to eliminate any confusion, perhaps in case the bank was also waiting for a different robber). Meanwhile, a bank employee had police on the phone. The robbers had demanded $100,000 (Sh10m), but they settled for a lot less ($99,100 less, to be exact). They then walked out into the arms of police, who arrested both without incident. They were charged with first-degree robbery and threatening in the first degree.

Burglar breaks into house full of cops

Scouting your target is another key secret to a successful burglary, says a retired robber. “A house full of valuables with no people inside is perfect,” he says. “The next best thing would probably be a home in which the residents are asleep.” But Darren Kimpton of Abington, Northampton was not bothered with all that hullaballoo and selected a home which had been burgled earlier that night. The owner had called police, and officers were on the scene investigating when Kimpton broke in. He made a run for it but was captured after a brief struggle. And that wasn’t Kimpton’s first burglary attempt of the day. He’d earlier tried to break into a nearby house, failed but managed to leave blood at the scene after a cut by the breaking glass.

Crook gives gun to victim

This particular robber probably should have aimed a little lower than the Halifax Bank in London. He entered the bank with a gun in one hand and a bag in the other and demanded £700,000 (about KSh92m) in cash. So far, so good. Next, he planned to hand over his bag, so the teller could pack the dough in it. However, he mixed things up handed over the gun instead. A brief pause followed as both contemplated on the awkward development. It took both the robber and the being-robbed a few seconds to realise the error. The robber tried to grab his gun back, but the bank worker was swifter and pointed it at him. Even so, the robber managed to make a run for it, and not empty-handed as such, as he pedalled off on a bank employee’s bicycle.

Permanent marker as disguise

Aspiring robbers Joey Miller and Matthew McNelly had enough brain cells to think ‘disguise’ before breaking into an apartment. (Un)fortunately, it is all the brain cells they could spare because they covered their faces in permanent marker. Now, the thing about permanent marker is that… well, it’s permanent. After the burglary, the pair was pulled over by police and their faces covered in ink sent them straight to jail.

She goes to cops over substandard cocaine

Eoise Reaves was feeling aggrieved after buying crack cocaine she felt wasn’t up to standard. Instead of changing the dealer, the brave Reaves approached a policeman and asked him to help her get her money back from the pusher. She showed him the crack, which she had tucked away in her mouth, and he placed her under arrest.

Bank robber leaves teller with payslip

An Illinois man forgot to think through his inaugural robbery and it became his last. The 40-year-old walked into the bank with a threat note that read: “Be Quick Be Quit [quiet]. Give your cash or I’ll shoot.” The teller obliged and handed him $400 (Sh40,000). The threat, however, was scribbled on a piece of the thug’s payslip. Detectives found the other half of the payslip outside the bank—complete with the robber’s name and home address.

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