Tuesday, 8 April 2008
Crime doesn't always pay
I've just been reading about the Czech shop assistant who foiled an armed robbery. The youth was wearing a Spiderman mask, and pointed a gun at the woman, demanding money. Instead she offered him tea and cake, and asked what a nice young man like him thought he was doing trying to commit robbery. After some refreshments, he left empty handed.
I've often wondered about this sort of thing. What people who use guns to get their way actually do if someone says "no". Though if I was looking down the barrel at the time, I suspect my curiosity would quickly disappear. I suspect that unless you're a reasonably mature woman the old cake routine wouldn't work.
There's something very satisfying about incompetent robbers. I love that clip which is shown on almost every "stupid criminal" programme - the one where the robbers couldn't get out of the bank because they didn't realise you had to pull to open the doors - presumably that sort of important detail is supposed to be picked up when you "case the joint".
Or the thief who stole a record collection, then later returned it because they were Des O'Connor records. [NB: Link not safe for work!]
Another brilliant one is the recent story about bank robbers in Mexico who tunnelled into a bank, but miscalculated and ended up in a locked toilet instead of the vault. With all the alarms going off, they probably felt a pressing need to use the facilities, though I doubt they had time.
They really should give more publicity to these people, in particular plastering their names and faces all over the media at every opportunity. Surely the possibility that you might spend the rest of your life as a laughing stock would be a better disincentive to becoming a robber than the threat of a prison sentence.
However, a bigger deterrent could be to sentence theives with a year listening to Des O'Connor records non-stop...