Dumb Criminal of the Week: The Alleged Domestic Abuser Who Got Beat Up by Robbers

A blog about murder, theft, and other wickedness.
May 10 2013 1:17 PM

Dumb Criminal of the Week: The Alleged Domestic Abuser Who Got Beat Up by Robbers

A police car blocks a street near Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.

Photo by JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images

Crime is Slate’s crime blog. Like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter @slatecrime.

Name: Unnamed alleged domestic abuser


Crime: Simple assault – domestic violence.

Fatal mistake: Not realizing that what goes around comes around.

The circumstances: Domestic abusers are bullies and cowards who deserve nothing but scorn, societal disapprobation, and, every now and then, a humiliating public comeuppance. That brings us, via Washington, D.C.’s PoPville blog, to a Metropolitan Police Department bulletin that is as satisfying as it is brief, and an example of the sort of vigilantism I can get behind.

On Saturday, April 27, around 4:15 a.m., the unnamed perpetrator and his girlfriend got into an argument near the intersection of Vermont Ave. and K St. NW in downtown Washington. The argument escalated, and the guy started physically assaulting his girlfriend. Luckily for her, three passers-by intervened. Unluckily for him, the passers-by started to rough him up—or, as the MPD put it, “commenced to strike the complainant about the body”—before taking some cash and his cell phone and fleeing the scene. When the three guys departed, the original girlfriend-beater apparently did what any theft victim might do, and complained to the police. This was a bad idea—for him. As MPD put it, “The complainant was arrested and charged with simple assault-domestic violence regarding the assault that he allegedly committed on his girlfriend.”

Details are scarce from this point on, so we don’t know exactly how this guy went from contacting the cops about his stolen phone to being arrested himself. But in general, it’s a bad idea to call the police to report a crime if there’s a chance they’re going to arrest you for some other crime. This seems obvious. If you’re robbed in the process of committing some other crime, consider it karmic justice and go home, tend to your wounds, and reflect on the error of your ways.

How he could have been a lot smarter: Don’t hit your girlfriend. Ever.

How he could have been a little smarter: Seriously, don’t hit your girlfriend.

How he could have been a little dumber: “It was Chris Brown, I swear! Look, he’s getting away!”

How he could have been a lot dumber: “You’re arresting me for hitting my girlfriend? I’ll show you hitting!” (lunges at police)

Ultimate Dumbness Ranking (UDR): Dumb and cowardly. And it just goes to show that good things very rarely happen after 4 in the morning, especially not at K and Vermont in downtown D.C. What, did he think the Juice Joint was going to unexpectedly open its doors and start handing out free juice? There’s no such thing as free juice! 9 out of 10 for the unnamed alleged domestic abuser.

Justin Peters is a writer for Slate. He is working on a book about Aaron Swartz, copyright, and the rise of “free culture.” Email him at justintrevett@fastmail.fm.



The Ebola Story

How our minds build narratives out of disaster.

The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola

PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer

The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics

A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers


Welcome to 13th Grade!

Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.


The Actual World

“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.

Want Kids to Delay Sex? Let Planned Parenthood Teach Them Sex Ed.

Would You Trust Walmart to Provide Your Health Care? (You Should.)

  News & Politics
Oct. 22 2014 9:42 PM Landslide Landrieu Can the Louisiana Democrat use the powers of incumbency to save herself one more time?
Continuously Operating
Oct. 22 2014 2:38 PM Crack Open an Old One A highly unscientific evaluation of Germany’s oldest breweries.
Gentleman Scholar
Oct. 22 2014 5:54 PM May I Offer to Sharpen My Friends’ Knives? Or would that be rude?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 22 2014 4:27 PM Three Ways Your Text Messages Change After You Get Married
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 22 2014 5:27 PM The Slate Walking Dead Podcast A spoiler-filled discussion of Episodes 1 and 2.
Oct. 22 2014 11:54 PM The Actual World “Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.
Future Tense
Oct. 22 2014 5:33 PM One More Reason Not to Use PowerPoint: It’s The Gateway for a Serious Windows Vulnerability
  Health & Science
Wild Things
Oct. 22 2014 2:42 PM Orcas, Via Drone, for the First Time Ever
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.