The 7 Deadly Sins as Explained by Real News Stories

These outrageous true stories will make you pray for your fellow man.

december january 2016 outrageousNishant Choksi for Reader's Digest

Lust: When their pet tortoise, Boris, escaped through a fence, the frantic owners searched YouTube for tortoise pornography. The mating noise is loud and startling, reports the Week UK. It’s also evidently quite seductive, since Boris lumbered home soon after hearing the videos play. Source:

Greed: A North Carolina college student was arrested for using counterfeit money. What gave her away was the signature on the bill. It’s supposed to be the name of the secretary of the Treasury. Instead, it was signed “Moe Money.” Source:

Anger: A Miami Beach thief snatched a necklace from a tourist and took off. He was arrested when he returned to berate the victim over his “fake” jewelry. Source: Fake news has been around for a long time–this is how the U.S. countered propaganda during World War II. 

Sloth: Don’t be that lazy person who never rereads her texts. When a British woman texted a baker to make a cake for her daughter’s 21st birthday, she requested a “wee blond figure” on top. Thanks to autocorrect, the figure adorning the cake was a wee blind girl.  Source:

Pride: A thief on the lam was arrested soon after liking a copy of his Wanted poster on a Crime Stoppers Facebook page. Source: Great Falls Tribune (Montana)

Envy: Pro tip—covet only those things you know how to use. After spotting the car of their dreams, two Houston teens pointed a gun at the owner and made him hand over the keys. One problem—the car had a manual transmission, and neither teen knew how to drive a stick, which made it a lot easier for the cops to catch them. Source: Associated Press

Gluttony: A burglar broke into a house in Petaluma, California. He might have gotten away with it except for the fact that he stopped to heat up some Tater Tots. That’s not all. When the homeowner returned, she found him snoozing on the couch. Source: Associated Press

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Andy Simmons
Andy Simmons is a features editor at Reader's Digest.