You may have heard of the Darwin Awards – the recognition given posthumously to people who unintentionally do themselves in by less-than-intelligent means. If you are not familiar with the term, just Google it, and you’ll be amazed at the stunts some people try, only to have those antics be their last. And while very few burglars actually meet an untimely end in the course of committing a crime, the low level of intelligence that some of these perps exhibit is certainly comparable.
Of course, your average burglar is not a genius to begin with: there are so many smarter ways to earn a living than breaking into homes to steal cash, jewelry, and electronics, often to support a drug habit. Remember, burglary is usually a random act, not the carefully planned heist we see on TV or in the movies. So if we agree that the average burglar is not the sharpest tool in the shed, it may explain this report from McAlester, Oklahoma, of two suspected serial burglars who bragged about their heist – on an accidental 911 call made while in the victim’s home. Read on!
A McAlester man who pocket-dialed 911 while allegedly burglarizing a McAlester home on July 12 was taken into custody early Wednesday morning and is suspected in a string of other burglaries, which include homes burglarized while the owners were at spouses' funerals.
Oh, no. Not just a low life, but a real low life. Who else would rob a home during a funeral for a family member of the homeowner?
A Serial Burglar – and a Ringleader
Kerns said the man is suspected in a number of burglaries in the McAlester area. “This string of burglaries has been going on since the end of June, with a bunch on the July 4th weekend,” Kerns said. “We have at least 10 and probably a lot more.” Kerns said the man was allegedly the ring-leader of a group of people involved in the alleged burglaries.
Payton Brewer, 23, of McAlester, was arrested July 12 and charged in Pittsburg County District Court with felony counts of second degree burglary and knowingly concealing stolen property. Brewer’s arrest and charge came after authorities received a 911 call from an accomplice’s cell phone while he and Brewer were allegedly burglarizing a home on Peaceable Road.
Can You Hear Me Now?
“There was a 911 call made by an individual who was breaking into a residence on Peaceable Road, just south of McAlester,” said Pittsburg County Undersheriff Richard Bedford. “We believe the 911 call was made accidentally by pocket dialing. The two burglars were discussing what they were taking from the house.” Specifically, Bedford said the two men were talking about the jewelry they were allegedly stealing from the home while 911 dispatchers listened into the conversation.
Hot on the Trail
Bedford said his men immediately responded to the call and when sheriff personnel arrived at home, the two alleged burglars had already left. “We followed their trail,” Bedford said, “to the Gold & Silver Exchange on South Main Street.” Bedford said Payton Brewer was inside the Exchange. He “was inside with jewelry we believe came from the residence. We recovered quite a bit of property — including jewelry, a gun and tools.” Brewer was arrested but the alleged pocket-dialer fled the scene, Bedford said, and allegedly continued to burglarize homes until he was arrested early Wednesday morning.
Preying on the Bereaved
Kerns said the group targeted many homes in the McAlester area. He said some of the homes targeted were owned by people who had recently lost a loved one. “Retired Sheriff Deputy Louis Perry was at his wife’s funeral when his house was burglarized in McAlester,” Kerns said. “His wife had been in law enforcement too and their retired badges were stolen.”
Another woman in McAlester had her home burglarized on the night of her husband’s funeral. Dr. James Utterback, president of Seminole State College, is the son of Jim and Jimmie Utterback. Jim Utterback recently died and his funeral was Monday at 10 a.m. Jim’s wife, Jimmie, stayed home alone for the first time after her husband’s death on the night her house was burglarized, James Utterback said.
Now there’s one set of burglars we’ll be particularly happy to see off the street for a long time, but sadly there are plenty more to take their place. And this article does demonstrate that burglars can be persistent, and are not quick to learn from their mistakes. That’s why it just makes sense to increase your peace of mind with a monitored alarm system – preferably one with safer cellular monitoring, the kind FrontPoint sells. With a burglary happening every 14 seconds somewhere in the US, you want the best protection to deliver the most peace of mind. Along with cellular monitoring, check out our industry-best interactive features, and you can see why FrontPoint is the leader in wireless home security, and the #1 ranked home alarm company in the US. When you are ready for safer, smarter, simpler, more affordable, and virtually impossible to defeat, FrontPoint is your clear choice. Then you’ll be ready – even for those rare smart burglars.