A New Zealand burglar gave himself up when he called police to tell them that he had just bumped into a dead body hanging in the darkness of a house he had broken into.
The 26-year-old man had such a fright that police decided not to charge him for the break-in at the house in the Fairfield suburb of Hamilton – especially after deciding that but for the burglar’s petty crime the man’s body might not have been discovered for days.
‘He got a heck of a fright, that’s for sure,’ said Senior Sergeant Freda Grace of Hamilton Police.
‘But because he called the police himself to raise the alarm, we arrested him but decided not to charge him.’
‘He got a heck of a fright': A burglar who broke into a house in New Zealand gave himself up after discovering a dead body hanging inside. (Stock image, posed by model)
The burglar might not have needed to call the police – his screams on bumping into the body in the dead of night startled neighbours so much that they called the police themselves.
They believed the screaming was a domestic dispute, New Zealand media reported today.
The terrified burglar did not wait around for police to arrive at the house. After making the call to alert them of his gruesome find, he ran all the way home.
Sergeant Grace said the hanging victim, who has not been identified, had died hours before the burglary.
‘If it wasn’t for the break-in it’s possible he might not have been found for days,’ she said.
The burglar, she pointed out, was ‘known’ to police.
‘We’re hoping that the weird circumstances he found himself in might change his ways,’ said Sergeant Grace.
‘Hopefully there will be a positive outcome from it and he will decide that burglary is not the thing to do.
‘I would be taking that as pretty bad karma.’
She added that the whole situation was ‘incredibly sad.’
‘It sad for the guy who felt so bad that that’s what happened to him. Really, the whole set of circumstances are just horrid.’