Thieves Return Stolen Goods After Realizing They Ripped Off Victims Of Sexual Assault

Burglar-Apology-Note-768x1024__1376145655_142.196.167.223A group of thieves returned a bunch of stolen computers after they realized they had just ripped off a support center for survivors of sexual assault. The resounding response is, “Aww. How sweet.” Is it bad that I’m not touched by this story?

From Salon:

In what could be the nicest (and strangest) story you’ll read all day, a group of thieves who lifted several computers from a Los Angeles office building returned the stolen goods after realizing that they had just ripped off a support center for survivors of sexual assault.

The burglars felt so bad about stealing from the nonprofit that they even included a note of apology, explaining [sic]: “We had no idea what we were takeing. Here your stuff back we hope that you guys can continue to make a difference in peoples live. God bless.”

Look, I think it’s fantastic that their hearts aren’t black and they were able to realize that stealing from survivors of sexual assault is grosser than gross. But I’m still going to think that all of the people who decided to not wake up and go rob people are better human beings than this group.

I’m probably just jaded because I’ve had and have known so many people that have had stuff stolen; bikes, cameras, computers. I remember how it felt to be in my car after someone broke into it. It’s a really unsettling when someone violates your space and takes your stuff. You can potentially be destroying someone’s livelihood when you take something that isn’t yours. I just find it hard to be touched by this story.

What if it was just a small start-up they were stealing from that still didn’t have the money to replace their stolen goods? How can you just assume that people you are stealing from deserve to be stolen from?

I’d like to teach my children that you don’t steal from people – period. Not that you only steal from the right people. Obviously I am happy the center got their stuff back – the alternative is pretty horrible. I guess I’m just having a hard time being touched by the story. Maybe I’m the one with the black heart.

(photo: San Bernadino Sexual Assault Services)

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  • Blueathena623

    You’re right — I’m conflicted. My knee-jerk response is “awe!” but then I think “wait, what? Don’t steal, period.”
    So you gotta wonder, whose stuff did they steal now?

  • That_Darn_Kat

    I’m with you. On one hand, I’m glad they returned the items to where they were needed, but I want to smack them upside the head and yell at them for stealing in the first place.

  • jendra_berri

    By the writing in the letter, these were not educated people. Low levels of education can be linked to being low-income or in poverty, which can spawn thieves. Stealing is a shitty thing to do, but somewhere along the line, these thieves developed some sort of ethics, which is better than no ethics.
    Best not to steal at all; It’s wrong and violates people. But I have to wonder what their story is. No one is all good or all bad. This situation illustrates that rather well.

    • AugustW

      I’m lucky that I’ve had enough support to avoid falling that far down the poverty hole but…if my daughter needed to eat or needed medicine to live and I had absolutely no other option but to steal something for cash?

      Yeah. I’d do it.

      But you better believe my ass would be waiting hours in food bank lines before I got to that point.

      I have lived off one $1 cheeseburger from McDonalds per day so my kid could have vegetables (food stamps pays for $2 per meal per person.). There is a lot I would do before I would steal.

  • Alicia Kiner

    Maybe there’s a part of us that is just glad that even criminals can care about other people? Maybe we’re just glad that there is in fact good in people that do bad things?? Yes, they made a choice stealing, but they made it right by returning the things they stole. Maybe (big maybe here) they learned their lesson here, and will go forth and sin no more (yes sarcasm here). Maybe we all just had a little slice of faith restored in humanity. Maybe maybe maybe. Who knows?

    • Gangle

      I have to agree with you here. These were obviously not hardened criminals. Because I doubt that a truly shitty person would give a damn who they stole from. I don’t think the chances that this will be the last time these people steal is very high. But I do think that it may give them food for thought, and make them realise that there are real people who are affected by their actions.

  • lin

    I’ve been poor and haven’t broken in and robbed a place. Do I get an”aaaw, how heartwarming…”? No, because that isn’t so sweet and nice of me, it’s just not being an asshole to begin with. I’m glad they have some decency, but no, no warm fuzzies from me.

  • k_milt

    My ex and his friends were B&E experts. My ex always claimed he was the “lookout”, and stupid young k_milt was so very naive. Anyway, those guys are a group of truly shitty people. They steal from their own mothers. They’re well over 30 years old and can’t keep a job for more than six months, they drink constantly and, in my ex’s case, can’t get an apartment on his own for some mystical region. He’s right now living with his “girlfriend”, who he claimed to despise until she got her own apartment. Two days later he’s at her door, suitcase in hand, asking if he could crash there for a few days. Apparently three or four months is the same as “a few days”.

    Back in the days where they constantly drank and did every drug under the sun and were well rehearsed in B&E, which was their major source of income (heaven forbid one of them get a real job). If they found out they’d robbed a crisis centre for sexual assault victims they would have pissed themselves laughing, saying “oh shit, as if we robbed a charity, hahaha!” and there would be zero conversations about returning the stuff because none of the are able to do the right thing unless they’re getting something out of it. The jerks in the OP are total jerks, as are all burglers, but I hope these guys can at least hang onto that tiny piece of conscience they have left and knock it off with the burglary already.