WaPo Senior Editor Discusses 'Facebook Burglar'
MICHELE NORRIS, Host:
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Michele Norris.
ROBERT SIEGEL, Host:
Marc Fisher, good to talk with you once again.
MARC FISHER: Good to be with you, Robert.
SIEGEL: And first, tell us briefly about the Facebook burglar and why we call him that.
FISHER: He took the computer, and after the burglary was finished, he opened it up, took a photo of himself wearing my stolen winter coat and holding the cash that he'd taken for my son's room, and he posted it on my son's Facebook wall as an act of taunting. And that photo was there for my son and everyone else in the world to see.
SIEGEL: Well, the picture on Facebook led to something that I gather is rather unusual in the District of Columbia, at least, which is a burglar actually getting caught and getting arrested for the crime.
FISHER: In fact, across the country, only about 12 percent of burglary cases are ever resolved. So really, the overwhelming majority of people who have, you know, the most common crime in America happen to them; their house being broken into or their car being broken into and things taken, that experience goes not only unpunished but really unrecognized in almost all cases.
SIEGEL: In this case, the burglar is found and is charged and he pleads. Was the process satisfying to you at all?
FISHER: And so property crimes fall to the bottom of the ladder. And yet, any crime researcher will tell you that burglary is a stepping stone crime. It's what leads to more violent crimes. So why not nip it in the bud?
SIEGEL: To be the victim of a home invasion, of somebody going through all your stuff, your son having somebody get on his Facebook page, is there an enduring scar from all that? Is there a residue of all that?
FISHER: There is this sense of, well, are we safe at home at night? Do we trust the people around us? So that - it has this corrosive affect on your ability to trust your neighbors and the people around you. And that is something that the system really needs to take into account in a much more active way that it's normally done both in big cities but also even in suburbs across the country.
SIEGEL: Well, Marc Fisher, thank you very much for talking with us.
FISHER: Good to be with you.
SIEGEL: Marc Fisher, senior editor of The Washington Post. His most recent article about this is called "The Facebook Burglar Busted Into My House. Why Wasn't That Taken Seriously?" It appeared in this past Sunday's Outlook section of The Washington Post.
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