A MAN who claimed that ‘The Joker’ had threatened him with a knife on Valentine's before fleeing with his iPad has been fined after officers unravelled his string of lies.
It soon became clear that the 22-year-old’s report that his bag had been taken by a man disguised as the super villain was infact more suited to a comic book, as the item he claimed had been stolen was tracked back to his own bedroom.
The Sutton Coldfield man called officers to report that the ‘robber’ had threatened him before running off just outside the town centre. And as officers flooded the area to search for the alleged suspect the story started to unravel.
The Boldmere resident had returned to his parents’ address and waited 15 minutes before contacting police.
And as officers spoke to him he began to change his account, revealing he had in fact not seen a knife. At the same time officers started to track his computer tablet.
A short time later officers had tracked the ‘stolen’ iPad − with the signal showing that it was just feet away... upstairs in the his bedroom.
The man, who was shown not to be mentally ill, was subsequently issued with a £90 fine for wasting police time.
Detective Chief Inspector Phil Radbourne, from Birmingham North local policing unit, has warned others against making similar false reports: “Following the initial report of the armed robbery a number of police officers were involved in this investigation, officers that could have been taken away from a genuine emergency.
“But at the same time this case does show how officers can use technology to track items which have been reported stolen. While in this case it was the downfall of the man making the false report, often it has helped us return stolen items to people who have been a genuine victim of crime.”
The false claim was made in the in the early hours of Friday February 14.
To find out how officers can use a tracking app to locate offenders and recover stolen property watch West Midlands Police’s ‘Be SMART with your mobile and tablet’ video.