The 15 Unluckiest Dumb Criminals Ever
The best-laid schemes of mice and men often end in handcuffs.
Should’ve activated your karma alarm
Is there no honor among dumb criminals? While two suspects were being questioned by Ogden, Utah, police about shoplifting from a store, someone broke into their car and stole a stereo and several other items.
This looks like a safe place…
An El Paso, Texas, man busted into a church and absconded with the safe. Safes are heavy, so he only got a few yards before dropping it on a neighbor’s lawn, where he tried to crack it open. That’s when he was confronted by the home’s occupant—a police officer.
A new hobby
Thirty-three-year-old Jose Santiago, Jr. decided his hometown could use one more cop. Guess who? It would help his charade that he had bought an old police car and mounted red and blue lights on its dashboard. When a driver pulled into Santiago’s apartment complex, he blocked the guy’s car with his own, then motioned him over. Santiago, who wasn’t wearing a cop’s uniform, barked, “Do you have a problem?” and then started laying into the man about his driving, claiming he’d been doing 65 mph. Are you a police officer?” the man asked. When Santiago said yes, the guy asked to see his ID. Santiago refused and continued with his tough-cop routine. That’s when it turned into a fake cop’s worst nightmare. The driver had no problem pulling out his own wallet and showing his identification. His name was Jeremy Gaughan, and he happened to be an off-duty police officer. You probably break these weird laws all the time.
The great computer caper
Jon Eipp’s story began with burglar alarms at Portal Publications in Novato, California. Police rushed to the scene and caught Eipp, 39, and an accomplice running away, leaving an array of stolen computer equipment outside the office building. Both dumb criminals were arrested, and Eipp’s trial began. Two days into the proceedings, some Civic Center employees showed up for work and got quite a surprise. Their computers and monitors had been swiped. Eipp was lucky enough to get his high-tech haul out of the building, but his stupidity caught up with him. By the time Civic Center workers discovered their equipment had vanished, Eipp was already in police custody. Shortly after leaving the Civic Center, he’d been caught right down the street trying to steal a Volkswagen. Now he faced charges that included attempted auto theft, burglary, and grand theft. Last September, he pleaded guilty to them all.
A humiliating hurt
When 23-year-old Zachereya McGrew discovered that his car speakers were missing, he figured he knew who’d swiped them—a teenager from a nearby neighborhood. And he’d make the kid pay. The teen was in his front yard when a car zoomed up and McGrew jumped out. He ordered the youth to get in the car and take him to his speakers, which the terrified boy refused to do. McGrew then reached into his waistband and pulled out a handgun. At that point, the teen took off at a sprint, and McGrew fired at least two shots at him, missing his mark. Once the boy was out of sight, McGrew slid the gun back into his waistband. Maybe he fumbled things because his pants had begun to sag, or maybe it was his nervous excitement, but McGrew’s finger squeezed the trigger, firing off a perfect shot—into his own left testicle. That can cause a guy to flinch, which McGrew did, pulling the trigger again and sending another bullet slamming into his left calf. McGrew was charged with aggravated assault and pleaded guilty. You need to meet the 38 dumbest criminals of all time.