Burglar uploads his picture to Facebook victim's account

Filed Under: Facebook, Law & order, Social networks

Do you recognise this man?

Facebook burlgar

If so, Marc Fisher, a reporter and editor at the Washington Post would probably like to hear from you.

The photograph shows a man, wearing Marc's brand new winter coat, and holding a wad of notes that he's lifted from Marc's 15-year-old son's desk.

Not only was cash stolen in the burglary, but Marc's son's laptop, iPod, and some savings bonds were also taken.

What's astonishing is that the thief also decided to open the stolen computer, take a picture of himself posing with the stolen items, and posted it on Marc Fisher's son's own Facebook account.

You can read the full story on the Washington Post website where the reporter appears to be underwhelmed by the police's response so far, but at least reports that Facebook acted quickly to shut down the burglar's access to his son's account.

You have to wonder just how far Facebook addiction has gone for someone to feel compelled to upload evidence of their crimes while still out on the job.

Update: In February 2011, 19-year-old Rodney Knight plead guilty to second-degree burglary in connection with the incident described above.

Prosecutors said that Knight had stole about $400 in cash, as well as a coat and two laptop computers.

Knight also admitted one count of carrying a pistol without a license, in an unrelated incident to the burglary.

In May 2011 he was sentenced to 3.5 years in prison (27 months for the burglary and 17 months for the weapons offense).

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57 Responses to Burglar uploads his picture to Facebook victim's account

  1. Allan · 1221 days ago

    epic fail :))

    • Nick van Heineken · 1220 days ago

      I'd love to see his status changed from "at large" to "incarcerated....and it's complicated."

      • Joe · 1219 days ago

        Guy obviously knows how to use Facebook. Must be a user. They should do some of that new auto-tag recognition on his mug..

  2. Paul · 1220 days ago

    >holding a wad of notes that he's lifted from Marc's 15-year-old son's desk.

    So his 15 year old had a wad of Benjamin's in his desk? Maybe Marc needs to have a talk with his son about how to safely store his cash, and, perhaps, his source of 'income'.

    • Homer Sinson · 1219 days ago

      Hide your money in books ;)

    • Jim · 1219 days ago

      In the photo there appears to be two, or possible one folded oddly, hundred dollar bill. The bills behind it are singles. That's not very much money in this day and age. The $100 could easily have been a birthday gift or an early Christmas gift. Or he could be a hard working kid that earns spending cash shoveling sidewalks. Given that some of the items stolen were US savings bonds, it looks like the kid knows how to safely take care of money. Maybe the cash was being accumulated for the purchase of the next savings bond. There are a lot of explanations, most of which are positive.

      Paul, I think you need to focus on the crime at hand instead of taking the most jaundiced view of the victim.

      • Kevin Brintnall · 1055 days ago

        Thanks, Jim. Your reply to Paul is dead on accurate.

    • Shocking as it may be to your norms of overprotective parenting, some parents let their children do work for their neighbors, and even encourage it, and allow their children to save up their own money. Only in a society that infantilizes near-adults would your comment make sense. I guess in your mind the only way for children to be like adults is for them to be "bad."

      And people wonder why kids these days are tempted by drugs and gangs. It's the only chance we give them to be real.

    • chris · 1055 days ago

      paul that was the first thing i thought...not about safely storing cash but a 15year old with that kind of cash..too funny

    • Chris · 1055 days ago

      @ Paul...

      So what you're saying is that it's Marc's fault that they got robbed?

      So what you're saying is that it's Marc's fault that his criminal broke into their house?

      Maybe you need to reassess who the perpetrator of this crime really is and get clue, lest a criminal breaks into your house and steals that television that you haven't chained to the wall, or rips off your bluray/DVD because you haven't bolted it to the cabinet.

      I mean, if they did, it would be YOUR own fault.

  3. NYC Nice Guy · 1219 days ago

    Actually, this is kinda cool. Gotta love them alpha males! I know it's annoying and even infuriating but it's called evolution and natural selection. The modern world has become less and less hospitable for the most alpha of alpha males, so they have no other outlet than petty crime.

    Still, it's quite a glorious thing! I don't often root for criminals, but this guy's got style for sure. Kinda like the dude who came up with the "Columbian neck-tie"....

    BTW, I speak as someone who's been burglarized myself, so it's not like I'm unsympathetic to the victims' plight. But you gotta hand it to the criminal in this case: he did it with ballz, and he did it in style! Like that other dude, the Dinnertime Burglar, who'd rob folks while they were in the house!! People like these really deserve our sympathies, too...they should be in Special Forces or something....

    • darrad · 1219 days ago

      You sir are an idiot!

    • Doc · 1219 days ago

      Evolution doesn't exist. Thank you.

      • Pinky · 1219 days ago

        That's rite the earth was created 7000 years ago, everybody knows that.
        and Dinosaurs are only in the imagination of those crazy scientists, that believe that rock in the from of bones that coincidentally make the shape of a big animal.
        people will never learn.

        • CJR · 1055 days ago

          I guess you didn't get the memo. "God" put the dinosaur bones on earth to deliberately confuse the evolutionists.

      • avisioncame · 1068 days ago

        Sorry, you aren't allowed to say that on the internetz.

    • Killjoy · 1219 days ago

      An alpha male is the male that has all the breeding rights in herd animals. Human mating is on a paired basis. The term 'alpha male' applied to humans is merely a rhetorical gesture not to be conflated with evolution and natural selection as biological concepts. Scientifically speaking the guy is not an alpha male, he is a thief.

      • Humans are socially monogamous, some of the time. But humans are really flexible animals, and alpha males in the evolutionary sense do exist. The fact that heroes in ancient in medieval literature are described as abolishing "ius primae noctis"/"the right of the first night" (though there's no direct evidence of it actually happening, the fact that they went through so much effort to criticize the practice says something), the fact that slaveowners did what they wanted with their slavewomen, the fact that polygamy is still practiced in many cultures, especially among the rich men of those cultures, and has historically been practiced by many more...

        But even on the streets of our neighborhoods and the dorms of our colleges, there's that one guy who "gets all the ladies..."

    • kregg · 1219 days ago

      This guy is so obviously the thief...

    • chicagoguy · 1210 days ago

      the guy is disgusting and deserves to be punished. And you
      are a little cuckoo.

    • Jane Carter · 1055 days ago

      Alpha male? No, ignorant little prick who cant be assed to work so goes thieving. Neuter the fecker and get him OUT of the gene pool. And you Sir, might want to think about the kind of person and actions that impress you.

  4. Shell · 1219 days ago

    I actually only see two Bennies in that stack. Probably some sort of savings.

  5. Aaron · 1219 days ago

    That's hardly a wad of bills,
    1 hundred on the outside, everyting on the inside are singles (notice the green patterns at the corners of all the bills not on the outside.)

  6. Mike · 1219 days ago

    I have to ask though:

    1. Why wasn't there an alarm system installed in the house?
    2. Why did your 15 year old son have that amount of cash simply in his desk and not locked up in a small safe or in a bank account?
    3. Why on Earth weren't the Savings bonds in a safe deposit box at the bank?
    4. Why wasn't the computer password protected, so the burglar could not get into it?

    I do feel sympathy for this guy and his Son. but at the same time, if you choose to not safeguard your property and your belongings, then criminals will choose to steal from you over someone else.

    I especially don't understand this because was written in the article, he lives in the City.

    • Hamtramckan · 1219 days ago

      Blame the victims. They were asking for it.

      • Mike · 1219 days ago

        The criminal was responsible, but the victims made it much easier to rob from them then someone else.

        Stealing is a crime, but not adequately protecting ones family and possessions is also a crime. What if this had been a home invasion? Without an alarm system and at least one pistol in the house for self defense, this man's son could have died or his family.

    • asdf · 1219 days ago

      Are you dumb? These were all their property inside their own home. It would be different if they invited the burglar, that later stole some of the stuff while visiting. But in this case, he wasn't invited and the decided to burglarize them.

      • mike · 1219 days ago

        No, I'm not dumb. I protect my house and my property. The people that are ignorant are the ones that assume that they are safe without taking the correct precautions. The government and the police can't be everywhere at once.

        I sincerely hope that the victim in this case, Marc Fisher, considers what happened, and takes the steps to make sure his house and his family are safer from this type of event.

    • Canada · 1219 days ago

      are you a thief? Only a thief would think like that. It wasn't that much money that the son had in his desk. At best it was 200$. I regularly have that much money at my house. Sheesh it must be nice to live in the US.

      • mike · 1219 days ago

        I'm not a thief - I'm an intelligent individual. You have to consider where you live and take the appropriate precautions. If you live out in the country in Canada - sure you can keep money in your desk. But if you live in a major city, you must take precautious. By the way, isn't Vancouver known for a very high crime rate? One of the highest in North America?
        http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columbia/story/2...

    • Steve · 1216 days ago

      You're.. pathetic Mike.. criminals do not have a database of which computers are not locked and which drawers have free money. They go and look. You are speaking as if karma drew this criminal to this house. Do you think before you write?

      The criminal did not "choose" to steal from them because they "chose" not to safeguard their property. Come on buddy. Think a bit

      • Mike · 1189 days ago

        Steve,
        I'm saying what I'm saying here in hopes that the guy that wrote the original article and other people that read my comment realize how a few simple precautions can help protect them from crime.

        But you have resorted to name-calling, which I won't do.

        In any case, most police departments say the same thing I'm saying. If you don't want to be a victim of crime, then take precautions.

        Will it completely stop crime? No, but it can help deter it.

        Yes, criminals don't have a database, but if a house has an alarm system and a solid door that can't just be kicked in with goods locks, chances are that a criminal will bypass that house.

        Steve, that's not karma, its the facts. An alarm system, secure doorways and windows and some simple precautions will help prevent your house from being broken into.

        The harder a house is to break into, the more likely a criminal will leave it alone. How does that have anything at all to do with "karma"???

        • Kitarrah · 1055 days ago

          Why is everyone getting so upset with Mike for being practical? In this day and age, you DO have to be very concerned about the safety of your home, family, and possessions. Ever watched that Discovery Channel show "It Takes a Thief"? They show you that you aren't as safe as you think you are. I'm not saying what the burglar did was right, and neither is Mike. We are merely saying that people need to be vigilant and take precautions to help prevent theft. Now, I don't know what kind of system the victims had, but the savings bonds should have been in a safe of some kind, the cash shouldn't have been in the 15-year-old's desk, and the computer really should have been password protected. Not to mention, if you let Windows or whatever program save your passwords for you to sites, if someone takes your computer, they have all your passwords to everything too! This thief should not have been able to access the computer or the Facebook account. It's sad that everyone is getting on Mike's case and saying "only a thief would think that way". No, only someone who has done their homework and knows that you need to do more than just lock your windows and doors to prevent thieves breaking in thinks that way. I guess I'm overly cautious, but I've known for quite a while that thieves will find someone else to rob if they see the owners of the house have taken more precautions to prevent break-ins than most home owners. Sorry guys, but Mike is right that people need to be more careful these days to prevent theft. Again, I am NOT blaming the victims for the theft! I'm sorry they had to go through all this. I'm hoping the guy in the picture gets caught soon and that the victims get their stuff back, or at least the satisfaction of seeing the guy pay for his crimes.

    • Tina · 1055 days ago

      Not safeguard? Are you a moron? This was in their own home.

  7. ErinP · 1219 days ago

    This is a long shot, but it seems to me that facebook could check its logs for the IP address of the POST request where the image was uploaded. Even if the thief was in a public place (library, coffee shop), chances are he was posting from some location near his home. Or maybe he's just dumb enough to post from home (or a friend's), in which case the ISP could provide an address. I don't know what the legal requirements would be -- warrants and so forth -- but it's worth a try.

  8. Guest1234 · 1219 days ago

    I am still sort of a noob with networks, but couldn't you use the mac address from the laptop stolen to locate the access point that the criminal used to connect to the internet. Also, I know that Twitter has gps coordinates embeded in the scripts of their web site that actually shows where and what time that you posted a status update or whatever. I bet that Facebook has something similar.

    • Nobody Special · 1219 days ago

      Having the MAC address wouldn't do you any good. However, Facebook locking the account was probably counterproductive, as you can locate someone these days by their IP. Let the moron post on facebook, find the location, then call the police.

      This burglar is in my eyes less than a human, being proud of what he did. I hope there's a special spot in hell reserved for people like this.

    • blahblah · 1219 days ago

      Use the MAC address of the laptop? Are you kidding?

      Yes, you are right. You are a noob with networks.

  9. Jim · 1219 days ago

    Perhaps if more people read the linked to article there would more intelligent comments. For those of you asking why isn't the laptop being traced through access points, the article says "Facebook is now awaiting a subpoena from D.C. police, after which the company will hand over information about when and where the burglar used my son's computer".

    • Tony · 1217 days ago

      Speaking of lack of intelligence, you appear to miss the fact that you are directing your comments to posts that are not in response to the linked article. If you are going to cite the linked article, perhaps you should direct your lack of intelligence towards like-minded posts there.

  10. Deebo · 1219 days ago

    the MAC would only work if you are within the same network.

    I'll bet by the weekend, one of his "buddies" snitches him out and dude is in jail by Monday evening.

  11. jaycee · 1219 days ago

    any document that important to your son should be emailed to himself every so often

  12. John · 1219 days ago

    Where is Facebook Facial Recognition when you need it? That would be an awesome way to catch this guy.

  13. Realman · 1219 days ago

    I enhanced the image of the perpetrator by raising the gamma setting. Check it ou here: http://img534.imageshack.us/i/burglar.jpg/

  14. SpiritualMadMan · 1218 days ago

    He didn't *REALLY* expect anything of the DC Police except Gun Confiscation did he?

  15. Syed Hasan Atizaz · 1215 days ago

    there has to be some motive, maybe he is bored by the freedom!! who knows.

    • Komputergod · 703 days ago

      There is something seriously wrong with this "gentleman" and you have to wonder did he want to be caught and get free help?

  16. Katnipkitkat · 1055 days ago

    Maybe if they would have allowed the thief to keep access to the Facebook account he might have continued to post clues to who and where he is! (Seeing as how he was dumb enough to post his picture with him holding the goods.)

  17. Uwe · 704 days ago

    Who pressed the shutter?

  18. Shizniticus · 702 days ago

    That man needs the money more than the child. Just look at his hands- he can't even afford lotion...

  19. Freida Gray · 702 days ago

    Considering that the burglar kicked down an 80 year old basement door to get in the house,it wouldn't matter how much security was on the rest of the doors.Considering that my husband once saved over $200.00 by the time he was 14,the fact that a 15 year-old has that amount of cash doesn't surprise me.Considering that checking the IP address or the MAC would only show that the post originated from the victim's own home...which the victim & police already knew,there wouldn't be much help there.It appears that calling the police to report a burglary isn't much help either.The victims were told that the police generally don't push burglary investigations because the burglar usually only gets sentenced to probation...IF he is ever caught in the first place.
    I do have a question though.How much security will an 80 year-old basement door be able to hold ?

  20. ringokarma · 701 days ago

    The thief proved one point clearly - the gene pool is getting very thin. For those above who applauded the thief's chutzpa, wait until he or someone like him sticks a gun in your face, then applaud him - if you're still alive. When he gets out of jail, do you think he will be rehabilitated? Not. He will be a life criminal with a crack or heroin habit, and 20 years from now when his heart starts to give out our tax dollars will pay for his medical care. You don't think so? One of my friends works in a situation where health care is given to former crack and heroin users suffering from heart problems - and we foot the bill. As for security, these guys break in knowing they have 10 minutes until the cops arrive. They're in, they trash your home, and out before the coppers get there. If caught, judges that we elect slap them on the wrist, parol boards let them out early, and they're back in business. Whet we need is a solid "Three-strikes and you're out" legal system.

  21. Speedclik · 698 days ago

    I was a victim of Home Invasion and had a gun placed on my head. All those people applauding the burglar are pretty stupid. Ignorance is bliss as they say even though its a false one. I was so scared for over a year that I couldnt go anywhere without looking over my shoulder. I was in a state of panic all the time. It was prayer and support from Family and more prayer that helped me. I pray something similar doesnt happen to those applauding this criminal. Because they might not even survive to be afraid

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About the author

Graham Cluley is an award-winning security blogger, and veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and gives computer security presentations. Send Graham an email, subscribe to his updates on Facebook, follow him on Twitter and App.net, and circle him on Google Plus for regular updates.