A trio of thieves is feeling pretty stupid this week after they allegedly broke into the offices of Santa Clara "smart logistics" startup Roambee and stole some office equipment. In addition to stealing laptops, a 3D printer and two 4K monitors, as ABC 7 reports, they took two boxes from the office filled with the company's signature device: a GPS tracker for packages. The company was able to track the stolen goods first to a house in San Jose, then to a storage unit in Union City, and finally to Alameda where a pair of suspects were taken into custody. A third suspect, a state prison parolee, was located in Union City, as KCBS reports.
The thieves obviously grabbed Roambee's tracking devices thinking they were something else, and failed to do a quick Google search before, within six hours, the devices led authorities right to them.
"Fortunately, I don’t think burglars were very smart in that aspect,” says Santa Clara Police Lt. Dan Moreno speaking to KCBS. "They thought they were cell phone chargers."
Thieves steal GPS devices from Santa Clara start up. No brainer for cops to track them down. Find 'roambees' & other stolen goods/2 arrests pic.twitter.com/QlqAn49Q6L— @Rob Fladeboe kron4 (@KRON4RFladeboe) June 7, 2017
In total they took over 100 of the devices, worth about $18,000 and Roambee employees, upon discovering the thieves took a box of the trackers, immediately knew they'd be able to hunt them down. KRON 4 reports that this wasn't the only dumb thing the crooks did: They also kicked back with a beer taken out of the break room fridge, and one of them cut themselves, possibly while jimmying the lock on the door, so they left behind both fingerprints and blood evidence.
The suspects, two men and a woman, have not been publicly identified as it appears this burglary ring is tied to other crimes KCBS reports that other stolen property was found at the Union City location besides the items belonging to Roambee.
And, obviously, this is an accidental publicity boon for Roambee itself, which touts these GPS trackers that companies can use to follow their own shipments and assess risk as valuable goods move around the country. The devices are said to be able to track items within 10 meters, sending signals every 60 seconds.