One would think every thief would make sure they get away with their loot by clear any trace of your identity from the scene. There are notorious thieves in the world who became very famous for hiding their tracks entirely making it impossible for law enforcement to catch them. That is why an investigation is always the first step in finding a thief. But this is only possible if the thief was smart enough to do some hiding at least. Some thieves, however, don’t even need investigating because they incriminate themselves through hilariously silly mistakes. While accidents and errors occur in every aspect of life, being sloppy while stealing or even after stealing is plain stupid. Some mistakes made by thieves went as far as earning them a place in this list of dumb thieves.
1 The Robber That Confessed While Swearing at a Witness
Now when you are accused of robbing three stores in the same city, you need an excellent lawyer. But Dennis Newton didn’t think this was necessary when he went to Trial in Oklahoma in 1985. He fired his public defender and decided to represent himself in the trial. He then realized he was doing an awful job and chose to rehire his public defender. When Darlene Danner, a manager of one of the stores he had robbed identified him as the robber, Newton burst out, “You lying b*ch, I should have blown your f****ng head off.”
As the whole courtroom went silent shocked at his confession, Newton realized his grave mistake and added, “if I’d been the one that was there.” His fate was so sealed though; the jury just took 20 minutes to give him ten years for each of the robberies he was accused of.
2 The Robber That Shot Himself & Called 911
Terrion Pouncy made news all over the US in October 2017 when his case was presented before a judge in Chicago. He had gone to rob a hot dog stand on Maxwell Street Express where he forced two employees to give him all the cash in the register as well as their wallets and phones. He must have scared the employees too much because one of them dropped a bucket of grease on the cash that was being given to him by the other employee. As Pouncy bent to pick the money, CCTV recorded his underwear as well as his face.
To make things worse, his .38 caliber pistol shifted in his waist, shooting him in the penis as one of the employees tried to wrestle him. He then ran across the street and called 911 claiming to have been shot. While in hospital, the police caught him with the blood-stained underwear. He also missed his bail hearing thanks to his self inflicted wounds. The police recovered the gun and all the money he stole.
3 The Burglar That Forced His the Victim to Write Him a Check
This one went down as one of the funniest robberies of all time. Charles A. Meriweather broke into a lady’s house in Baltimore on the night of November 23, 1978, and raped the 34 years and before ransacking her house for cash. Charles was hugely disappointed because the lady had only $11.5 in cash, so he asked, “how do you pay your bills?” “by check,” the lady replied so Charles asked her to write him a check for $30. He then changed his mind and told the lady to up the amount to $50.
When the lady asked who the cheque should be addressed to, he gave her his full name, Charles A Meriweather. It was probably the dumbest robbery in history because the police tracked down the check and arrested him a few hours later.
4 The Robber That Shot Himself in the Foot
Shooting yourself in the foot is usually used more sarcastically than literally, but this bank robber from Brazil knows the meaning of that phrase just too well. Three bank robbers were in action after storming into a bank in Parana Brazil. While two men took the cash, the lookout man armed with two pistols got too itchy with his trigger and shot himself right through the foot.
The robbers still managed to get away with $17,000 in the action that was recorded on CCTV, but their injured buddy became a total liability. A blood trail allowed the police to track him straight to a hospital near the bank. He later gave up six of his accomplices instead of just the first three that were recorded on camera.
5 The Robbers That Welded an ATM Shut Instead of Cutting It Open
There was no need to catch these thieves because they did the police’s job securing the ATM better than the bank. The two men carried blow torch on to the second floor of the bank building on Boardwalk on Okaloosa Island Florida in June 2019. They managed to obscure their faces with sunglasses as the camera recorded their bungled burglary step by step. As the first man lit the “blow torch” on the hinges of the ATM, he never realized he was carrying welding equipment until after sealing off the hinges of the ATM.
The police were notified the following day after an employee found burn marks on the machine and a wholly shut ATM. The sheriff confirmed that they had not stolen anything but still asked anyone with information on the suspects to give it to the police.
6 The Car Thief That Trapped Himself in the Car
Car theft is one of South Africa’s biggest economy breakers. But in November 2014, a car’s auto-lock system managed to catch one thief in a very embarrassing position. The thief employed a jamming device which helped him gain access to a car just a short while after the owner packed it on Gauteng street in Johannesburg. However, after entering the vehicle, the auto-lock system activated automatically trapping the man inside.
He started panicking when he was unable to get free after 30 minutes in the car. He started calling on passersby for help but only managed to attract a crowd which started mocking him and called the police instead. After two hours in his small prison, the owner of the car came and opened the car. The thief was freed straight into the hands of the police.
7 The Bank Robber That Gave the Cashier His Name and Address
People get broke sometimes, but you don’t solve that by attempting to rob the same cashier that has just changed your name and address in the bank records. Dean Smith went to a Barclays Bank Branch to update his details and noticed that there was cash in the tills. He then came back 30 minutes later armed with a bread knife to rob the bank.
He was only disguised with sunglasses and socks over his shoes, but the cashier remembered him as the man she had just served a short time before. The staff refused to give him the cash leaving him no choice but to run empty-handed. The police went to his home to pick him up. He was jailed for two years after confessing to the crime and apologizing saying he was just in desperate need of the money.
8 The Thief That Left His Homework at the Scene of the Crime
In May 2012, Dallas Naljahih broke into an old couple’s home in Orem, Utah. The 75-year-old owner saw a light in his office as Dallas was busy ransacking for some valuables, so the older man confronted him. The 18-year-old teen punched the old man in the face and took off on foot, leaving his backpack behind.
When the police checked his backpack, they found a flash drive containing his school assignment with the details, including email address and phone number. The police found the young robber sleeping in his house with the items he had stolen from the 75-year-old man. Hope he had finished his homework because he was going straight to jail!
9 The Thief That Wore Stolen Boots to Trial
On Dec 18, 1996, Charles Taylor robbed a shoe store in Wichita Kansas off $69 worth of boots. When he appeared for trial in March the following year, Taylor was arrogant enough to place his feet on top of the defense desk. The whole court had a good look at his pair of hiking boots. The judge was more than shocked at what he saw. He said later in an interview, “I leaned over and stared. I said, ‘Surely nobody would be so stupid as to wear the boots he stole to his trial.’” But this one was.
He was wearing the same boots named by the prosecution, Tan in color, size 10 ½ and labeled batch 1046. The Judge agreed that the prosecution was not responsible for Taylor’s choice of footwear. Thereby had no choice but to give up the stolen property in his possession back to the shoe store. He went to jail in stockings ti serve his 15-year jail term.
10 The Burglar That Fell Asleep in the Victim’s House
Undoubtedly, every smart thief knows better than to sleep on the job. Well, at least most do except this one.29-Year-old Dion Davis broke into an empty house in Nokomis, Florida and collected jewelry, but instead of fleeing the scene, he decided to nap.
He was still asleep when the cleaning lady came to the house the following morning. The cleaning lady called the police who were kind enough to snap a photo of him next to the bag of stolen jewelry before cuffing him. He was booked at the county jail and later given 24 months in prison for breaking in and attempted robbery.