MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) - These days, many criminals are getting arrested because something is caught on video or a camera – but two teenagers in Minneapolis were caught by taking selfies on a cell phone they had just stolen.
The Sherva family was gone over Labor Day weekend when a tablet, laptop, three cell phones, jewelry and clothes were all stolen from inside their home. However, it was not until strange pictures – selfies – showed up on their photo-sharing account that they knew for sure they had been hit by thieves.
The victims shared the photos on social media and in almost an instant they had the names of the two people who had broken in.
“It was amazing and almost overwhelming how many people reached out and said ‘I know that guy he used to date my sister’,” Jenny Sherva, one of the burglary victims, said. “One was even a brother that reached out and said that's my brother and he's wrong for what he did and he needs to pay for it.”
The Shervas did their own detective work by putting it all out on social media, but police were also watching the online activity. For the Sherva’s, it was more than just “things” that were taken. The laptop belonged to Jenny’s 10-year-old and the sentimental value was irreplaceable.
“That laptop belonged to my ten-year-old whose dad actually got it and passed away in April,” Jenny said. “It was his dad's laptop, so he basically got it from his dad when he passed away. So it wasn't just a laptop, it was a link for him to his dad.”
Because of the selfies, police were able to arrest the two suspects. One of the two suspects has admitted to the crime, but not one item has been returned.
However, the clothing that was taken was all brand new back-to-school stuff from Macy’s. Jenny had asked if she could re-purchase the stuff at the sale price she got it at, but instead, Macy’s replaced what they could -- for free.