UK Police Department Twitter Accounts Offer FREE iPads... With A Catch

from the please-tell-me-someone-fell-for-this dept

Normally, if someone were to offer you a FREE iPad or the like unsolicited via the interweb, you'd either be a) reasonably suspicious or b) consulting various anti-malware forums in hopes of regaining control of your computer/Facebook account/credit history. But what if that offer were to come from a more respectable source -- say, an official police Twitter account? If you answered "b" then you're probably taking stock of your life and wondering if leading a life of crime is really for you.

Police in Leicester did exactly that, tweeting out this tantalizing offer to the public a few days ago.
"Not a scam: If you've committed a burglary in the #Leicester area within the last week - come to our #police station & claim a FREE iPad."
While it's doubtful this police department snagged any criminals with this playful tweet (although I'm holding out hope that it will), it did manage to catch that attention of another police department, who accused the Leicester police of tweet theft.
.@CityCentreLPU – we need to talk to you about a tweet theft earlier today, “You do not have to say anything, but it may harm your....
The Solihull Police had apparently made the same offer to gullible criminals earlier that day, but had only received 18 retweets as compared to the 4,000 received by Leicester's purloined tweet. An apology was extended and both police departments went back to work, providing a mixture of the useful and the comical, with Solihull PD helping reunite lost cannabis with its owner and the Leicester Police performing field sobriety tests via Twitter.

I know we tend to focus on the negative side of the law enforcement community so it's nice to see little exchanges like this coming from official channels. It goes a long way towards humanizing these two departments, keeping these accounts from turning into faceless department bullhorns dispensing nothing but blotter activity and talking points.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    Zakida Paul (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 4:02am

    Wasn't there something similar in an episode of The Simpsons years back? That must be where the police got the idea from.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    Richard (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 4:35am

    Hmm

    Find and act that fits the dictionary definition of burglary but is not illegal - claim 2 free iPads....

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 4:35am

    Re: Hmm

    I misread it as buggery and got all excitec.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 4:44am

    Re:

    Dammit! I was going to say the same thing...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    plonker, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 4:57am

    sorry i should translate for our american cousins:

    burglary = burglarization (or burglarizationism perhaps)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 5:25am

    Hey, if some criminals are dumb enough to turn themselves in to collect the reward money (only to find out they aren't eligible for the reward money) then SOMEONE must be dumb enough to take them up on this offer!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
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    Leigh Beadon (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 5:50am

    Re:

    "Can I have my motorboat now?"

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 5:58am

    funny but.... bragging about ruining someones life over catching them with drugs.... not so funny.

    @SurreyPolice
    Surrey Police
    Nine drug related arrests this week, one person found with a white powder...and it wasn't snow! #DeckTheCells


    Ruin someones life by arresting, charging them, more so than if they took coke occasionally.
    Brag and joke about scumbags who rob and commit violent crimes.... ok
    Bragging about ruining a persons life because the drug they had was not government sanctioned like alcohol is.... scummy as fuck.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 6:12am

    Re:

    It's not the same, really. People are trying to genuinely change he laws regarding drugs of all kinds. In the meantime, mock away!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 6:49am

    Re:

    Given how much the british society shells out because of people not appearing in court, I think it is well worth it to give it out while taking the criminal into custody. Sad but true: Bribery of this sort is a cheap way to bring the wankers to justice.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 8:20am

    Re: Re:

    Mock away... when a man is literally kidnapped over christmas, fined and possibly forced into containment in a prison. All for having a recreational drug in his possession.
    Meanwhile in the real world.....Alcohol related crime/injuries/deaths at epidemic levels.

    @MostWantedDangerousKidnapperTerrorists

    Nine Police officers were kidnapped this week by armed men, for having alcohol.
    One officer found with Peach Schnapps...No Sex on the Beach for him #LonelyThisCopmas

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 8:32am

    Re: Re:

    Question:

    Would you rather be a victim of violent crime.... let's say a sucker punch from a drunk on a night out.
    OR
    Get arrested for having an E in your possession, held in a cell until the paperwork and court date is set.


    In certain instances the police are forced by law, to be worse than scumbags who violently attack you.


    POLICE RUIN PEOPLES LIVES. (lots of times I am grateful as fuck)
    At the very least they should have a valid reason to do so.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
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    WysiWyg (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 9:22am

    Wait what now?

    Am I the only one that reacted to the second tweet?

    "You do not have to say anything, but it may harm your...."

    Now I know it's the UK, and they do things differently there, but is that for real? That you staying silent can be construed as incriminating in itself?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 9:36am

    Re: Wait what now?

    "You do not have to say anything, but it may harm your defence if you do not mention when questioned something which you later rely on in court. Anything you do say may be given in evidence."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
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    The dude, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 9:53am

    Re:

    Oh someone is bitter; because the police took his "medicine" away i presume?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
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    WysiWyg (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 9:55am

    Re: Re: Wait what now?

    Okay, that's better, but it's still effed up!

    How will the average Joe know what will be useful in court!?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
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    Lee Lyons, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 10:30am

    But it may harm your defence....

    In the UK you do have a right to silence, but declining to answer questions and then producing answers at a later date can lead to inferences being drawn. But only in limited circumstances - the average dude will be given what is called a 'special warning' and it is limited in scope to key evidence that must be disclosed to the suspect (and legal advisor). If following these warnings they still fail to account for something then it is at the discretion of the court to assess and if proportionate draw an inference that the suspect cannot be believed in their account.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
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    The Groove Tiger (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 10:58am

    What would be hilarious, was if some thief was stupid enough to go to the PD for his free iPad, and some copper was stupid enough to give it to him...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 11:40am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I understand that. However, if you're idiotic enough to get caught with these drugs, then you should be mocked. Which is my point.

    In the meantime, I'm going to be busy campaigning to change the laws so that, for the most part, recreational drugs are made legal.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 8th, 2013 @ 11:41am

    Re: Re: Re: Wait what now?

    It's the original version of the Miranda rights. Note that it does not include the ability of the evidence you give to be helpful to your defense.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
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    hmm (profile), Jan 8th, 2013 @ 3:59pm

    I committed a burglary (to memory)...GIVE ME MAH IPAD!!!!!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    rwdi, Jun 2nd, 2013 @ 9:12am

    ask please

    Okay, that's better, but it's still effed up!

    How will the average Joe know what will be useful in court!?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    identicon
    Redcar, Jan 22nd, 2014 @ 2:00am

    Keep it up

    Police using any means possible to catch criminals we are all for that. Leicester suffers from a large crime rate like the North East were we are. So any efforts should be appreciated

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    identicon
    River Tees, Jan 22nd, 2014 @ 2:07am

    lol

    Did anybody actually turn up and ask for a Ipad???

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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