Crime and Punishment

Police Warn Not to Hunt and Attack Thieves Using ‘Find My iPhone’

This is what we imagine phone thieves look like. Do not approach! (photo via *Sax, CC-BY-2.0)

Apps that track your mobile devices are great for that Sunday morning when you can’t figure out if your phone is at the club, in a cab, or just in your damn pocket. But be careful where your phone-finding quest takes you — you could wind up meeting the person who stole it, and they might not be excited to see you.

Police are more and more concerned that apps like “Find My iPhone” are encouraging people to chase down and confront thieves, according to the New York Times. Theft victims have done everything from setting elaborate traps for thieves to teaming up with friends for a vigilante joy-ride — apparently hammers are popular on the list of scary weapons with which to intimidate phone-snatchers. Read More

Rise of the Drones

Criminals Using Drones To Find Marijuana Farms, Steal Their Crop

It's coming for your weed. (Wikimedia Commons)

Criminal gangs in the UK’s Shropshire county are using drones to locate marijuana farms, and then blackmailing the farms’ owners or straight up stealing their weed, ITProPortal reports.

It’s a tactic that law enforcement authorities worldwide have been employing for years — using thermal imaging to detect possible locations of grow houses. Marijuana requires hot temperatures and hydroponic lamps to grow, meaning that grow houses generally emit a ton of heat, and show up on cops’ thermal cameras. Read More

iCrimeBusters

MafiaLeaks Website Lets Italians Anonymously Squeal on Organized Crime

You think these guys aren't going to find you?!

Turns out that one episode of The Sopranos where the gang goes to Italy wasn’t exaggerating: the pasta-loving peninsula is still teeming with organized crime. And now, a new WikiLeaks-inspired website is hoping to put a dent in it.

Ten anonymous Italians created the site, according to the Daily Dot, in hopes of connecting police and journalists to people with inside knowledge about mob activity. Read More

iCrimeBusters

NYPD Captures 63 Gang Members Because They Referred to Guns as ‘Biscuits’ on Facebook

A "sandwich." (Photo: Hashgram)

Gangs may soon join teens in the “totally over Facebook” collective. The NYPD announced yesterday that it has arrested 63 members from three East Harlem gangs, after they left a trail of evidence boasting about their exploints online.

Authorities said the members—all men, 16 to 25—are responsible for 30 non-fatal shootings in the neighborhood since 2009. When using Facebook to plan their hits, they often used slang words. For example, guns were identified as “biscuit” or “clickety,” while ammunition were often labeled as “sea shellz” and “gas.” Read More