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Baiting Criminals

2010-07-13

Category: General

There is a station on cable TV called Tru TV. They specialize in crime shows and real video types of things. Because it doesn't require that I follow a story, I'll often have this channel on in the background to cover the noise of city living. Unfortunately, they have a program that always draws my attention from all else. They call this show "Bait Car".

The show is a real video show focused on a particular type of crime. Police departments set up special cars they outfit with cameras, GPS, and remote kill switches that allow them to shut off the vehicle and lock the doors. They place these vehicles in areas where car thefts happen way too frequently. The bad guys steal the cars while the cops watch, and then the cops shut off the vehicle and lock the bad guys in until uniformed officers can show up and collect the crooks.

In the early life of the program, the thieves on display put on a quite a show. Many of them were arrogant, filled with pride over how clever they were in their crime. Of course, all of this is on camera, complete with audio of the non-sense they babble. Then you get to see the change in expression when the car dies and the locks slam home. In the current season, some of the thieves actually joke about the car being a bait car as they steal it.

It's nice to see criminals yanked off the road so neatly. Because the vehicle is in control of law enforcement officials, the risk of danger to innocents is minimized. It would be better if we could find other bait type scenarios to get rid of criminals.

Imagine a military base in Afghanistan where there seems to be tons of activity every day. All the rumors and radio chatter suggest that this base is the most important base in that part of the world. Before too long, one of bin Laden's goatsuckers straps a bomb to himself and makes a run for the gate. With a mighty boom, the bad guys are short a moron. After a few more such attacks, the military deflates the "base" and set it back up in a different district.

I never liked rule breakers (except for me). As I get older, I become less tolerant of criminals. Any time we can catch them through cleverness, it is a good thing.


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