Crims caught out online

By Joanne Carroll

Burglars caught in the act by a CCTV camera in Karaka. Photo / Supplied
Burglars caught in the act by a CCTV camera in Karaka. Photo / Supplied

A brassy burglar seemed to have got away with a Christmas daylight robbery - till 11,000 Facebook users joined forces to catch her.

Police have spoken to a woman who is alleged to have helped steal presents from a house in Karaka, South Auckland, after she was identified by social networkers.

The woman - acting as a lookout - was captured on a neighbour's CCTV camera.

Neighbour Andrew Burns posted the woman's image on Facebook the same day, December 22.

"This scumbag has just robbed our neighbour of all their xmas presents this afternoon at 12.30pm," he posted.

"Then was stupid enough to walk in front of our security camera. I am hoping to send this viral so we can track down who this is. Can everyone share this link on their homepage so we can nail this son of a b****. If anyone can identify this person let me know and I will pass the information on to the police."

He also posted a photo of the stolen Subaru station wagon they were travelling in.

"We are a tad peeved with people coming down our street and robbing us," he posted.

"We have more video footage but that is for the police to deal with now. We are just hoping someone will recognise her and ring the number above.

"She is only the lookout person, there are others who were traveling in the stolen Subaru, who did the crime. Even though she is the one copping the flak, I don't feel sorry for her, she is as much to blame as the other crims in the stolen Subaru," he said.

This week, the photograph had been shared by almost 11,000 people prompting thousands of comments. Some of the people who commented claimed to know who the woman was - and Burns passed the name to police.

He told the Herald on Sunday police should use the power of social networking more often.

"Within eight hours of posting the picture we had three people identify the woman," he said.

"We have a very sophisticated security camera so we caught the car up our drive. It's quite a remote area and they went up and down about three times. They dropped the woman off and she kept watch while they went into my neighbours' [home] and took all their Christmas presents from under the tree and ransacked the rooms."

Counties-Manukau Senior Sergeant Gaylene Rogers said police had spoken to the Waikato woman pictured on the Facebook page, and were seeking one other person and the car.

No charges had yet been laid.

- Herald on Sunday

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