5 Daring Crimes (That It Turns Out Never Happened)
Being a police officer is probably hard enough without some of the crime victims just making shit up.
Yet, often elaborate and even brutal crimes turn out to, upon investigation, never have happened at all. Why would people make up such an convoluted lie? For a series of really fucking stupid reasons.
The Kidnapping of Baby Badass
Christmas 2008 wasn't so jolly for Miami resident Meagan McCormic. Instead of the normal annoyance of fake smiling over a God-awful sweater someone bought her, she had a regular silent nightmare on her hands: her son had been abducted.
Meagan said she had left six-month-old Riley with Camille, his gap-toothed, French nanny. When the au pair absconded with the tot, nearly 20 police officers bravely sacrificed their own priceless yuletide memories for a statewide Christmas Eve baby-hunt. Mom described the kid as having a mohawk, one tooth and a fake tattoo.
While there are definitely some snaggle-toothed, Brie-loving babysnatchers running amok out there, they certainly weren't near McCormic or her awesomely coiffed son. Why? Because the darn kid never existed.
Riley seen here on the swings.
Say you're having trouble getting over an ex. Whereas most of us choose to wank the pain away or drown our sorrows in fermented grain juice, McCormic refused to accept that her ex-boyfriend just wasn't that into her. To win her former beau back, she pulled one of the oldest tricks in the book: the unplanned mohawked pregnancy. And why go through all the trouble of actually having a kid when you can just tell him you did?
McCormic's plan fell to tatters when she forgot one eensy-weensy fact: maybe, just maybe, her ex would actually want to meet the tyke. When her boyfriend came down from Massachusetts to meet the lil' rebel, McCormic scrambled to concoct a tale involving an evil French crone with pissoir-poor dental hygiene. Presumably she made the nanny French to capitalize on law enforcement's latent Francophobia, but hatred of fine wine and semi-soft cheeses can blind your average Florida cop with rage for only so long.
A Frenchman, in a rare moment of not surrendering.
Once police realized they could drive their cruisers through the holes in McCormic's story, she was arrested. Her crime? Filing a false police report, and presumably inventing a baby too awesome to actually exist.
Marriage Counseling, Swedish Style
In October 2008, a 43-year-old Swedish man went to the German police with one heckuva tale: he'd been abducted from Sweden and transported to Germany in a Volvo. After stealing his money and credit cards, the Swede's captors unceremoniously dumped him at the Nuremberg railway station. Authorities initially believed his account, seeing as how there's nothing especially exciting to do in Nuremberg, other than stand trial for war crimes.
"Weather's fine. Wish you were here."
After Nuremberg police ordered a manhunt, the Swede admitted that he might have embellished things a little. The truth was, he just really, really, really didn't want to talk with his wife.
When your average Swede gives his wife the silent treatment, he usually tunes her out with an ice hockey match and a couple big swigs of aquavit. Very rarely does he simply hop in his car and make an impromptu cross-continental road trip without telling the ol' ball-and-chain where the fuck he's headed.
That's exactly what our Husband-of-the-Year candidate did. Our Swede clearly didn't give a fig how his wife's day was going, so he conveyed this indifference by driving from Scandinavia to Austria to Italy to the middle of Bavaria.
It was this point that the hubby realized that he may have crapped the wedding bed, so he did what any wayward spouse would do in this situation: fabricate a ginormous fib.
For those readers who may not grasp the total lunacy of this lie, imagine if the next time your significant other asks you to go the grocery store, you jump in your car and burn rubber 1,000 miles in the opposite direction. When you get there, call your mate and blame your absence on al Qaeda. See how well that goes over.
"...so then Osama bin Laden lets me go! In Manitoba! Crazy, right?"
The Serial Cockblocker
In late 2007, Amanda Bulliner of the tiny hamlet of Newport, New Hampshire told law enforcement that she had received cryptic phone calls from a stranger who had threatened her family. In February 2008, Bulliner again contacted the police, only this time a home invasion had left her and her young children bruised and battered.
Newport's finest frantically tried to find this violent stalker but came up empty-handed. How come? Well, perhaps in a town as small as Newport the police department operates with a certain degree of charming incompetence, a la Mayberry...
"I have no fucking clue what I'm doing!"
...or maybe it's just because Bulliner was stalking herself.
The calls? Fake. The mysterious stranger? B.S. The attacks on herself and her children? Sadly, that was real. In a move deserving of a "World's Worst Mom" mug, Bulliner hit her kids and then turned the full force of her poor parenting on herself.
What in God's name did she seek to gain from smacking herself in the face? The love of an ex-husband. Whenever her ex began seeing other women, Bulliner's "stalker" would materialize, thereby putting the kebab on his budding romance. She was a serial cockblocker, if you will.
Luckily, she was no criminal mastermind, which isn't really a surprise considering her plan to reunite her family hinged upon beating her kids. When the "stalker" left a threatening voicemail for the case's lead investigator, the cop did a little bit of gumshoe-ing (he tracked her via caller ID) and quickly threw the book at Bulliner.
A sad case indeed, but at the end of the day, we're still left with one question: how the fuck did she get custody of the kids in the first place?
Super Chinese Ransom Bros.
In July 2008, a couple from Shangqiu, China was aghast to find that their son, Yang, had been kidnapped. His captors demanded a 10,000 yuan ransom for his release. Naturally, Yang's folks took no chances and coughed up the cash to return their shanghaied son to Shangqiu.
First off, do you know how much 10,000 Yuan is? It's about $1,400. Yang's parents ostensibly complied with the kidnappers' demands since they knew a good discount when they saw it. After all, a grand-and-a-half is a bargain basement price for one's son to have a pulse.
This watch is worth approximately five and a half Yangs.
The kidnappers next gave Mr. and Mrs. Yang an even weirder request. They didn't want the ransom in cumbersome, unmarked bills. No, they would withdraw the money from an ATM. A nice, totally traceable ATM.
When police inevitably caught the idiot crooks using Mr. Yang's PIN, they were in for a twist of Shyamalanian proportions--Yang had kidnapped himself. Together with some pals, Yang schemed to extort a relatively small amount of money from his parents. Surely he must've put his parents through hell for some noble and worthwhile reason, right?
Well, no. Yang was pissed that mom and dad wouldn't buy him a "Nintendo computer" as the article says.
In short, this kid put his parents through extreme psychological torture instead of getting an after-school job. Also, we're not sure how authorities punished Yang for swindling his folks, but seeing as how Chinese society places a high premium on respecting one's elders, we're pretty sure he's currently farming rocks in the Gobi Desert or something.
The Runaway Bride
On April 26, 2005, Jennifer Wilbanks made national headlines when she disappeared before her wedding in an upscale Atlanta suburb. After a three-day bride-hunt, FBI involvement and media hoopla on par with the return of Jesus Christ, Wilbanks surfaced at a 7-Eleven in New Mexico, claiming she'd been kidnapped and sexually assaulted by a white woman and, gasp, a toothy Hispanic man.
Hmm, where we have heard these situations before? Let's see, mysterious cross-country disappearance plus ethnic abductor with poor dental hygiene equals... one total crock that the media totally ate up. Calling off a wedding is hard, but Wilbanks thought she could skip all that nasty lashback by falling off the damn planet.
When Wilbanks went for a jog one evening, something in the Forrest Gump section of her cortex snapped. From her home, she jogged to a taxi, which took her to a Greyhound bus, which took her to Las Vegas and then Albuquerque, where she bumbled around until she realized A) she was broke and homeless; and B) her fame had exploded so much so that, days later, a piece of toast bearing her likeness would sell for $15,400 on eBay.
The buyer was smart enough to welsh on the investment.
Upon her return to Duluth, authorities soon gleaned that Wilbanks's shaky story was a big load of horsepucky. To her credit, this vanishing act led to her break-up - Wilbanks and her fiance finally split 12 months, $43,000 worth of wasted police funding and one epic national embarrassment later.
For more comedy at the expense of stupid people, visit The Last Gaffe.
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