Police work is not all about car chases and forced confessions, despite what we see on TV. Some criminals actually serve themselves up to investigators on a silver platter.
The devil's in the detail
Imagine you were a thief who really wanted to get caught. What would you do after a successful robbery?
As a traditionalist, you could always return to the scene, reinforcing the old stereotype that criminals are magically drawn to the place where they committed their crime.
But in the age of digital media and mobile technologies, that wouldn't be necessary. You could, for instance, make a wanted poster with your picture on it.
That is pretty much what a 17-year old did after stealing a digital camera and some money from a construction site in the northern German town of Rendsburg. Confirming, yet again, that teenagers have an exceedingly short attention span, the young man took several photos, including some of himself. Then he simply tossed away the camera without erasing the photos from its memory.
"We don't know if it (what happened) was a series of unfortunate events or whether the thief couldn't get to grips with the technology," a police spokesperson said in a statement on Monday.
The evidence was compelling enough that the offender had no choice but to come clean.