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Floridian William Drew Webb returned home on October 15 only to discover that he was the victim of a burglary. The case then took a rather strange turn: the victim met the burglar in a local bar shortly after the crime.
The facts begin like any standard burglary. Webb's apartment was broken into, possibly using a knife that was found by police. The stolen items included valuables like two laptops, $100, credit cards, a Maurice Jones-Drew jersey, and some Jacksonville Jaguars season tickets.
Then a series of coincidences unfolded.
Webb's friend, Sean O'Conner, was at a bar. O'Conner purchased two Jaguars tickets from an acquaintance at the establishment. The acquaintance disappeared for a short while, but then reappeared. He asked O'Conner about whether or not police could recover fingerprints from a knife used during a burglary. The man then left the bar.
A short while later, Webb arrived and recounted the burglary story to O'Conner. It didn't take too long to put two-and-two together, especially when O'Conner produced the Jaguars tickets he had just purchased. They were Webb's!
O'Conner then found the seller, who was still at the bar. Confronted, the man returned the stolen items. O'Conner and Webb then contacted police.
The seller was charged with burglary, grand theft, and dealing in stolen property.
Could Webb and O'Conner have tried to arrest the suspected burglar themselves? Most states have laws on the books that allow for citizen's arrests. In those situations, however, one of the requirements is typically that the arresting person must have seen the alleged criminal in action.
Since neither William Webb nor Sean O'Conner actually witnessed the crime, it was probably prudent of them to wait for the authorities to come. As for the burglar, it seems he just had a lot of rotten luck. It's not often that a victim meets the man who burglarized his home in a bar.
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