The antics of a hapless Kaitaia burglar are entertaining
thousands of people thanks to CCTV.
A video posted to YouTube on Wednesday shows an attempted
burglary the previous night at Laurenson Technology, a
computer sales and service shop on Kaitaia's Commerce St.
The perfectly chosen soundtrack is the theme tune to The
Benny Hill Show, a slapstick TV series popular in the 1980s.
The video, dubbed Kaitaia Criminals, has since been shared
online by the Advocate, Houhora police and many others. On
the Advocate's Facebook page alone it was viewed 1740 times
by 4pm yesterday.
The footage starts just after 9pm on July 2 with a barefoot
man in boardshorts and a red jacket walking down Commerce St.
He stops clutching his head just long enough to take a look
in the window of Laurenson Technology, then returns a moment
later with a water mains cover.
He appears to have second thoughts and scurries away before
returning, minus the cover, for another peek and running off
again. When he returns for a better look he is cunningly
disguised with the red jacket over his head.
The next time he returns, for a third and fourth leer through
the window, he is wearing a different jacket. Moments later
he comes charging back, his mind apparently made up, but
scuttles away when spooked by a passing car.
His final return is made in full 'Gollum mode', hunched over
and with a dark jacket pulled over his head. It takes two
bashes with the mains cover and one with his arm to break the
window, but Kaitaia's criminal mastermind appears to be
surprised the shop has an alarm and scurries off into the
Unfortunately for the would-be burglar, he was recognised by
a Far North police officer and can look forward to a visit
from the long arm of the law.
Laurenson Technology owner Scott Laurenson said once he had
replaced the broken door pane with a metal sheet he asked
staff member Amorangi Mathews to go through the CCTV footage.
"He said, 'Holy heck, you have to see this guy'. It's really
funny how he tries to cover up at the end."
Mr Mathews used his editing skills to add captions and the
soundtrack, while former employee Dave Murray uploaded the
video to YouTube. The clear footage, not to mention the fact
the hapless burglar returned five times, would make
Mr Laurenson said he hoped publicity would deter future
burglars. Although damage in this case was relatively minor,
every broken window was a cost he could do without.
- Peter de Graaf of the Northern Advocate