Monthly Archives: January 2010

Would-be Thief Gets his Butt Kicked by Would-be Victim

Talk about teaching someone a lesson.  In Madison, Wisconsin a man who allegedly stole a laptop computer was tracked down and then allegedly beaten for hours by the victims, who in turn were arrested after the alleged thief called police on his cell phone.

As The Capital Times reports, the two arrested for allegedly beating the laptop thief are Tidane Ahmed, 21, and Diallo Ahmed, 22.

The alleged thief, Daniel Berg, 25, also was taken to jail on a probation violation after he was released from a local hospital where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries.

“The victim (Berg) had stolen a laptop computer from the suspects,” said Lt. Joey Skenandore in the incident report. “The suspects located the victim on the street and brought him back to their apartment, where they beat him for several hours.”

The two other suspects remain at large.

Burglaries up – Many while People are Home

In Wichita, Kansas police have recorded 2,839 residential burglaries last year – that’s a 10.2% increase over the same period last year.  Of the 2,839 burglaries, 384 – or 13.5% – occurred while residents were home.  Police say what is especially troubling is that crimes increasingly have occurred when people were home and asleep, which becomes an aggravated burglary and carries a stiffer punishment.

As The Wichita Eagle reports, the burglars (for some of these break-ins) had to have known that someone was home — there were cars in garages and driveways, and purses visible in the homes.  The criminals came in anyway — a brazen, potentially dangerous risk that burglars rarely take, so says. Lt. Barry VonFange. 

Burglars are targeting TV sets, laptop computers, and electronic gaming systems.  Police say these burglaries are often opportunity crimes, such as an open garage door or a homeowner inviting a resident over who notices a new big-screen TV.

“These burglars, a lot of times, they know the people who live there,” VonFange said.  They return to steal things when they know the resident is gone.

Police have a much better chance of recovering stolen items and catching burglars if owners record serial numbers and mark possessions with their driver’s license number.  In addition, police say to lock your doors and consider buying a home alarm system.

Staying Safe 101 – Tips from the FBI

Prevention is the key to personal safety, that’s word from FBI agent Harry Trombitas.

“Most of these thefts can be prevented simply by making your residence, your outbuildings, your vehicles, harder to break into,” the 27-year veteran said.  “Keep your garage doors closed and lock your vehicles.”

Being alert and responding quickly are also key elements in deterring or minimizing crime.  Trombitas was the guest speaker at a crime awareness seminar sponsored by CES Credit Union and the Mount Vernon News in Ohio.

Speaking to business owners on how to prevent a robbery, Trombitas said they should always check the building or lot before they enter.

“You business owners have to be on your toes all the time,” he said.  “There are people who will target owners as they enter a building…they can get a bigger haul than at the cash register…We actually have people who will follow you home, commit a home invasion, and bring you back the next day and try to get into the safe or vault,” Trombitas said.

Checking surveillance equipment frequently is also important.

“There is nothing more frustrating as an investigator…when I get there and find we have a terrible picture.  There is absolutely no excuse with today’s technology to receive a poor surveillance photo.”

Death of Security Chief Ruled Suicide

Markus Reinhardt, security chief of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland was found dead in a hotel room on Monday. He was 61-years-old.

Reports then were uncertain of the cause of death, but the prosecutor for the canton of Grison said today that Reinhardt shot himself with a gun in what’s been ruled a suicide.

No one knows exactly why he did it, but no time was wasted in finding a successor as one was installed the same day Reinhardt was found.

Four Charged in Sen. Landrieu Phone Tampering Scandal

4 men were arrested Wednesday and charged with attempting to enter federal property under false pretenses for the purposes of committing a felony.

The ‘federal property’ in this case was the office of Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA), and their mission was to tamper with her telephone line, gaining access by disguising themselves as telephone repair men.

Among the group are 24-year-old Robert Flanagan, son of U.S. Attorney William Flanagan, and 25-year-old James O’Keefe, who recently made headlines when he posed as a pimp and filmed himself getting advice on running a brothel from community organizing group ACORN.

It is unclear whether the group, who are being described as ‘conservative activists,’ was committing an act of espionage or simply pulling an immature prank, but what Sen. Landrieu is sure of is that Attorney William Flanagan should be disappointed in the actions of his son.

“This isn’t a child – this is 24-year-old, I’m sure his parents are terribly disappointed, they most certainly should be,” Landrieu told Politico in an interview.

The foursome could serve up to 10 years in prison if convicted, although they are lucky not to have been charged with wiretapping, which carries with it additional penalties.


Susan Boyle finds Stranger in her Scotland Home

Security surrounding singing sensation Susan Boyle has been beefed up after an intruder made his way into Boyle’s home in Blackburn, Scotland.  The intrusion happened on Tuesday.  That’s when Boyle came home to find a young man waiting for her, who had apparently been in her bedroom.  The intruder then ran pass her and out the door.

Susan’s brother Gerry Boyle told that Susan had just come home after recording a charity record for survivors of the Haiti earthquake, only to be startled by the presence of a strange man in her long time home.  He says his sister was shaken-up, but will be okay.

Boyle, the suddenly famous middle aged sensation, lives in a small home worth roughly $130 grand.  Her management team is being blamed by her brother for not being more cautious about Boyle’s security.

“She must be the only singing superstar in the entire world where people can walk-up their path and knock on their door.  I’m sure Simon Cowell would not be happy if he knew about the current security situation surrounding my sister.”

Meanwhile, Boyle tells the Daily Record that she is fine now, although the newspaper also reports that immediately following the incident Boyle was “terrified and hysterical” and thinking that this may have been the intruder’s second break-in. 

One insider says, “She’s worried it’s the same person this time too.  It’s just too much of a coincidence…She was badly shaken and very scared.  She was physically sick nine times after the incident.”

iPad Not Ready for Enterprise

The launch of the iPad has just been announced, and Apple fans are going crazy.  Said to be filling the product hole between Apple’s enormously successful iPhone and Macbook laptop, it’s designed for browsing the Internet, playing games, reading e-books and viewing video content with a fairly reasonable price-tag of $500.

The Kindle is shaking in its boots.

It may be a long while before the iPad becomes suitable for use by enterprises, however, because while its features and price may have a broad appeal for the business world, its lack of proper security can prove challenging for IT departments.

As TechWorld reports, the biggest problem would be for enterprises looking to control the device remotely, because “if the device gets stolen, there is no way for IT administrators to deploy a push policy that locks it, said Chris Hazelton, research director for mobile and wireless technologies at The 451 Group. That feature is available on the iPhone, and it could be implemented in the iPad over time if enterprise use of the product grows.”

The iPad also doesn’t support Microsoft Exchange, which would make it difficult for IT administrators to manage email on the devices.

But Apple may be stepping up its focus on security and business readiness sooner than you think because third-party vendors like Sybase or Mobile Iron might soon be delivering their own enterprise applications for the product.

In the end, like most of Apple’s products, subsequent generations will no doubt improve on previous ones.

Surveillance camera captures Thief’s very Big Nose

Here’s an odd, but funny story out of Florida – Lakeland Police are looking for a surveillance camera thief whose face – with a prominent nose – were caught on camera before the crime went down.

Investigators say the photo was taken just before the man stole cameras from a business in the 5000 block of Gateway Boulevard on New Year’s Day.

Anyone who recognizes the suspect is asked to contact Lakeland Police at (863) 834-6900, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-226-8477.

New iPhone Security App

Inventor Kevin Arndt (a General Sales Manager for 69 News in Pensylvania) and tech company Mosaic have teamed up to turn your iPhone into a security alert device. The new app, called Push to Alert, is scheduled to hit iTunes next month and is described as the first true security application for cell phones.

“You would push the app and then a list would come up,” Arndt says about the app. “Push the button that matches the crime you see or just the generic “help” button. You get a few seconds to cancel to avoid a false alarm. Then, your phone takes over. It starts taking audio recordings of the surroundings.”

The app would also alert local dispatchers and send alerts to other phones in the area.  Those who don’t own iPhones can still register to get alerts.

The app has met with widespread approval by both the International Police Association and the U.S. Government, who met with Arndt after the Christmas day bomber tried to bring down a plan set for detroit.

We can’t imagine, however, how authorities would deal with the inevitable slew of false alarms that would arise from its use.

Source: 69 news

Dallas Police Seek Robber in Capital One Bank Hold-up

Dallas Police are looking for a man who robbed a Capital One Bank Tuesday at 3575 Frankford Road in Dallas.

The man entered the bank at about 1:20 p.m., approached a teller, and displayed a handgun.  He demanded the teller turn over cash and the teller complied, according to a release from the Dallas police.

According to the release, the man fled the bank in a 2003 black four-door Ford Taurus that had no front plate and possibly a paper tag on the rear.

The man is about 55 years of age, 5-feet-9-inches tall and weighs about 180 pounds. He has gray hair, a beard and was wearing sunglasses, an orange hooded jacket and white baseball cap with no markings, according to the release .

If you have any information about this case, contact the Dallas Field Office of the FBI at 972-559-5000 or the Dallas Police Department Special Investigations Unit at 214-671-3661.  To read more about this crime and others click here on Crime Time.