As a blizzard pummeled the east coast, the streets of New York were empty- and some unsavory characters decided to take advantage of that.
In Midwood, Brooklyn, there was a series of car burglaries in the early hours of Tuesday morning. However, someone spotted a man checking the door handles of parked cars and called the Flatbush Shomrim, a Jewish civilian patrol group.
“They couldn’t find the guy,” Bob Moskovitz, Shomrim’s executive coordinator, told the New York Daily News. “So they started canvassing, and they found the footprints.”
The Shomrim followed a single set of footprints in the otherwise pristine snow for half a mile, until they came upon a man who matched the witnesses’ description.
The group tailed the man and watched him open another unlocked car. They then found the vehicle’s owner, called the police and kept the man, later identified as Terell St. John, 20, in sight until officers arrived.
“We used our best weapon — our finger — and pointed him out,” Moscovitz said.
St. John was arrested on charges of unauthorized use of a vehicle and possession of an open container. He has already served a year in prison for attempted criminal possession of a weapon.
Authorities later poked fun at St. John on Twitter. “Rule #1 don’t break into cars curing snow storm leaving your tracks,” they tweeted from the 70th Precinct Twitter account.