Burglary charges filed after Minnesota man logs onto Facebook while robbing home

A mugshot of the accused burglar, Nicholas Wig. Source: NTV Archive

Police in Dakota County, south of Minneapolis,  announced the arrest of a local man named Nicholas Wig on charges of burglary back in 2014. What makes the case of Wig so unusual are the circumstances around how he was apprehended so quickly.

The victim of the crime returned to his property on June 19, 2014 to find that an outer screen had been removed from a window. Fearing that his home had been robbed, homeowner James Wood rushed inside and discovered numerous items had been stolen – including cash, credit cards, keys and a watch.

He also discovered something odd – next to his desktop computer was a pile of wet clothes that he’d never seen before – it later emerged that these belonged to Wig, although the reason for them being left at the property remains unclear. What was clear, however, is that Wig had left behind an even bigger clue that would lead to his arrest in a matter of hours.

Wood turned his attention to his computer and was shocked to find that the man who had robbed his house had decided to check his own Facebook – and left the account logged in. Wood was able to see the man’s full profile and photos, and he quickly took screenshots as evidence.

With the identity of the perp now known, Wood shared a link to Wig’s Facebook profile on his personal profile, asking for anyone who knew Wig to give him a call. He was shocked, however, when it was Wig himself who sent him a message.

Wood told journalists that he replied back saying: “You left a few things at my house last night, how can I get them back to you?” – referring to the pile of wet clothes left near the computer. Amazingly, Wig agreed to return to Wood’s house to pick up the clothes.

While Wig was enroute, Wood phoned the Police, who arrived at the property to make the arrest. Wig was found to be wearing the watch he had stolen from Wood’s property, providing Police with another valuable piece of evidence.

Wig later admitted his crimes to investigators, and also confessed to logging into his own Facebook account on the victim’s computer. When asked why he would do such a thing, he reportedly declined to comment. As Wood told journalists, it’s quite likely the crime would have gone unsolved were it not for the burglar logging into Facebook. Wood also added that Wig is definitely not the world’s smartest criminal.