ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – Technology is making life harder and harder for today’s thief.
Alex Van Almsick of St. Louis tracked down the man who burgled his house by tricking him into relinquishing personal information via the internet.
Van Almsick said around $7,000 worth of electronics was stolen from his home, including his Mac computer. He then managed to access his computer online and gather information about the thief by watching him log in to Facebook. Van Almsick also used the camera mounted on the computer to get a glimpse of the thief himself.
He then wrote a program that allowed him to send messages to his computer that appeared to be coming from the computer itself.
“The Photobooth was opening up, and [I] was telling [the thief] to clap to get it to go away,” Van Almsick said. “Although, if he clapped it wasn’t going to do anything, but I found that hilarious.”
He then convinced the thief that he needed to enter his full name and address in order to access iTunes, Van Almsick said. He then took matters into his own hands.
“Me and a few friends grabbed a camera so that it was documented and he couldn’t really do anything, and we just knocked on the door,” Almsick said.
He said he then convinced the man to return the computer.
Almsick said he solved the case himself after having trouble getting through to police. He said police would not respond adequately to his phone calls, even after gathering evidence on the thief.