In a strange and (I trust) unrelated confluence of events today, I:
(1) Happened upon a blog post about stupid criminals in High Point, North Carolina, that
(2) Was building off the poster's Economist article on the “velvet glove” approach to criminals -- again in High Point, North Carolina, and
(3) Also discussed Mark Kleiman’s book, When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (which I have not yet had a chance to read), just as
(4) Kleiman was signing off his guest blogging stint at the Volokh Conspiracy (where it sounds like he got pushback from the VC commenters).
In any event, this is the part of the whole chain that caught my eye to begin with:
He [a member of the High Point police force] was describing a period when the police in High Point were trying to figure out which local youths belonged to which street gangs and which gangs were involved in which types of crime.
It turned out that one of their most valuable sources of information was the gangs' own Facebook pages. Some gangbangers had posted pictures of themselves posing with guns, showing off their gang insignia and bragging about the money they were making. They also posted messages to each other, making it farcically simple for the police to figure out who was associated with whom.
Criminal masterminds they were not.
Not the first time that a criminal got caught because of Facebook, of course.