Thursday, September 7, 2006

Dumb criminal of the day (2006-09-07)

Once again, the authorities in the UK have proven that closed-circuit television (CCTV) works, without violating the civil liberties of law-abiding individuals. Only this time, they caught a really, really stupid person on the wrong side of the law.

A guy in Manchester, England, was scared out of his wits when a photo radar flashed as he drove by it. Sitting on a few demerit points already (or as they say in the UK, his licence was "endorsed") he feared a speeding ticket would lead to a suspension, which would mean he'd lose his job as a welder. So a few hours later he returned to the scene of the crime and destroyed the camera with thermite, one of the materials he uses on a daily basis.

In reality, the flash was a dud -- it only flashed to act as a warning to drivers. It was never meant to actually give out tickets. But it did have a CCTV camera inside of it that caught the guy destroying the "evidence." Police headquarters caught the whole thing on tape from a remote location. Yesterday, Craig Moore, 28, plea bargained out to wanton destruction of public property and agreed to a four month prison sentence.

Imagine, out of fear of losing one's ticket to ride for speeding (a misdemeanour) which wasn't going to happen anyway, he commits a felony and gets a rap sheet. And we thought only Americans and Canadians were capable of becoming dumb criminals.

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