Last December, as winter’s grip began to take hold over Washington, D.C., Rodney Knight Jr. found himself in serious need of a heavy jacket. So he did what any of us would have done in these circumstances: he broke into someone’s house and took one. Knight kicked down the back door to the home of Marc Fisher, a metro columnist for the Washington Post, where he found his new winter jacket. In addition, being in a proactive mood, Knight decided to swipe two laptops and a bunch of cash.
Knight was so proud of his little heist that he felt the need to do a little bragging. Check out what one of the greatest criminal masterminds of the early 21st century did next….
Knight fired up the laptop that belonged to Fisher’s son and then took a picture of himself wearing the jacket and flaunting the cash he had taken. Unbelievably, Knight then posted the photo on the Facebook page of Fisher’s son. Can you imagine seeing a picture of the guy who just broke into your house, staring back at you on Facebook while holding your stuff?
There are two possible explanations for why Knight would have decided to do this, and both are equally stupid: (a) he thought he was going to his own Facebook page to post this to all of his friends or, more likely, (b) he put a photo on the younger Fisher’s Facebook page to taunt his victim. Smart. Hey, he’s just keepin it real.
Fortunately for the Fishers, the Assistant United States Attorney prosecuting the case, Sean Lewis, is pretty adept at using the internet himself. With a quick check of the IP address from which the Facebook photo was taken, they had their suspect. And, as icing on the cake, when police caught up with Knight in a D.C. alleyway a month later, they found him with a gun on his person, so he then had another lovely charge to deal with.
Upon seeing the evidence for the prosecution that he, himself, had posted, Knight pled guilty last month and will be sentenced in May.
Gabe Acevedo is an attorney in Washington, D.C. and the publisher of the e-discovery blog GabesGuide.com. His articles on legal technology and discovery issues appear regularly on Above The Law. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter.