The Photo-Booth Idea Was Bad Enough to Begin With

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Card booth… even before you posed with the stolen item.

The Capital Gazette reported on Saturday that police were searching for the pictured group of young people in connection with a case of alleged credit-card fraud. A woman reported she had lost her credit card while shopping at a mall in Crofton, Maryland. An investigation revealed that one day prior to the report, someone had used the credit card to buy movie tickets at a nearby theater. That transaction was captured on surveillance video, but that evidence turns out to have been pretty much unnecessary. The card was also used to take these pictures inside a photo booth in the theater lobby, and I guess doing this is one level smarter than posting similar photos on Facebook but that's still not even approaching smart.

It drops back down at least one level when you consider that in the second picture, one of them is holding what is presumably the same credit card (a VISA) up in front of the camera.

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To be fair, it looks like he wasn't holding the card up as a trophy or something stupid like that, but rather that it was there as a side effect of him trying to jam his thumb into his nose to make the picture "funny." He just happened to use the same hand that was holding the card. So let's give him a little credit for not doing it deliberately.

A tiny, tiny amount of credit.

One fact not in the report is how police got the strip of photos. If they left it in the dispenser slot, that would also have been dumb. But if police were able to obtain it from the booth's hard drive—I'm assuming that even photo booths like this are digital now—that would be less dumb but also another reason not to do anything embarrassing in a photo booth. I'm sure they'd tell you (like the TSA) that those files are never saved, but you know how that goes.

The report provides a phone number that police are asking people to call if they have any information about the incident, though I'd be a little surprised if they haven't turned themselves in by now.