My name is danah boyd and I'm a Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research, a Research Assistant Professor in Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University, and a Fellow at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society. Buzzwords in my world include: privacy, context, youth culture, social media, big data. I use this blog to express random thoughts about whatever I'm thinking.

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pictures of my robbers

Last week, six guys came into a party that i was cohosting and stole my stuff. The six came together and left together. Tonight, a dear friend found a picture of one of the guys online:

One party attender stated the this guy asked for the bathroom (where my purse was ripped apart for valuable items).

I contacted the photographer and he sent me the rest of the pictures where you can see more of the guys (time stamps: 1:24AM-1:39AM).

Another party attender accidentally walked in the bathroom when the actual robber was going through my bag. He didn’t realize what was going on at the time, but he was able to ID the actual robber from this picture:

“He’s in this picture, but his face isn’t visible. He’s the one standing closest to the orange door with the short hair and the green t-shirt. He was the tallest, least hip, and most drunk of the group. I wish you had something more identifying. That is definitely him.”

Because these guys racked up my credit cards (and used the web from my phone), it’s now a felony fraud investigation as well as a robbery. Thanks everyone for helping me track down more information. If anyone has any clues, do let me know. Needless to say, the bloggers are going faster than the detectives. Thank you thank you thank you to those3 who are looking out for me!

Update 3/23: Detective Jewett (the detective on this case) said that i could post his email if anyone has additional information and wants to send it directly to him. (Be nice! Don’t send anything not related to the case, cause he’s being open and helpful.)

Detective Jewett: jason [dot] jewett [at] ci [dot] austin [dot] tx [dot] us
Austin Police Report Number: 2004-501-1946


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137 comments to pictures of my robbers

  • r.i.p., my bike

    This is my 200th blog entry, but rather than wax philosophical on the nature of blogging or any other thing, I’m posting in memoriam of my bicycle — a silver, black, and red Specialized Hard Rock. It wasn’t much of…

  • Blog justice and its discontents.

    Last week, Austin Chronicle writer Courtney Fitzgerald e-mailed me about a piece on danah boyd’s purse controversy. She said I…

  • Deb

    I’ve got two words for you: lynch mob.

  • The Purse Incident

    George posted his take on Blog justice and its discontents as relates to this incident which occured at an “elite” SXSW party. Not that my opinion matters at this point, but you know…I read the purse thread awhile back, before…

  • kat

    Wow. I just read through this story from beginning to end and a few links from other people who were there at the party and someone who even flew back to Oakland with Danah.
    All I want to know is this, How did Danah fly back to Oakland with no id, no credit cards for proof of id in this age of homeland security?
    You can’t get on a plane without id so what the hell? Just curious. I am not even going on the racist thing cuz I’m more interested in flying without id.

  • Kat – i stayed in Austin long enough to have a Passport Fedexed and a credit card reordered in an emergency.

  • Blog justice and its discontents.

    Last week, Austin Chronicle writer Courtney Fitzgerald e-mailed me about a piece on danah boyd’s purse controversy. She said I…

  • The Blogsphere has spoken

    apophenia: pictures of my robbers I am really amazed to have stumbled across this. I hope that they find these guys and bring them to justice. I think if every victim of crime utilized the power of the Blogsphere, crime…

  • ANON

    I don’t believe that Zephoria’s declaration of who’s guilty/lack of the use of phrase alleged is required. In this she is not the press, but a witness. The witnesses, the victims, and the proscecutorial powers do not need to make qualified statements.

  • ANON

    I don’t believe that Zephoria’s declaration of who’s guilty us problematic, or her lack of the use of the “phrase” alleged is required. In this she is not the press, but a witness. The witnesses, the victims, and the proscecutorial powers do not need to make qualified statements.

  • Otto Hemi

    You guys have gotten some print ink, too.

    The Austin Chronicle is the local alternative weekly newspaper that is also the original sponsor of SXSW. This week’s (April 16) issue has an article, “Blog Justice On The Wild Web.” It should be available online at austinchronicle.com.

    Danah, you should look me up next year. Stealing is like, way, way down on the list of things I’d like to do with you.

    And, oh yeah, I’m pretty sure the guy in the second picture is Eddie Murphy.

  • You guys have gotten some print ink, too.

    The Austin Chronicle is the local alternative weekly newspaper that is also the original sponsor of SXSW. This week’s (April 16) issue has an article, “Blog Justice On The Wild Web.” It should be available online at austinchronicle.com.

    Danah, you should look me up next year. Stealing is like, way, way down on the list of things I’d like to do with you.

    And, oh yeah, I’m pretty sure the guy in the second picture is Eddie Murphy.

  • You guys have gotten some print ink, too.

    The Austin Chronicle is the local alternative weekly newspaper that is also the original sponsor of SXSW. This week’s (April 16) issue has an article, “Blog Justice On The Wild Web.” It should be available online at austinchronicle.com.

    Danah, you should look me up next year. Stealing is like, way, way down on the list of things I’d like to do with you.

    And, oh yeah, I’m pretty sure the guy in the second picture is Eddie Murphy.

  • You guys have gotten some print ink, too.

    The Austin Chronicle is the local alternative weekly newspaper that is also the original sponsor of SXSW. This week’s (April 16) issue has an article, “Blog Justice On The Wild Web.” It should be available online at austinchronicle.com.

    Danah, you should look me up next year. Stealing is like, way, way down on the list of things I’d like to do with you.

    And, oh yeah, I’m pretty sure the guy in the second picture is Eddie Murphy.

  • You guys have gotten some print ink, too.

    The Austin Chronicle is the local alternative weekly newspaper that is also the original sponsor of SXSW. This week’s (April 16) issue has an article, “Blog Justice On The Wild Web.” It should be available online at austinchronicle.com.

    Danah, you should look me up next year. Stealing is like, way, way down on the list of things I’d like to do with you.

    And, oh yeah, I’m pretty sure the guy in the second picture is Eddie Murphy.

  • You guys have gotten some print ink, too.

    The Austin Chronicle is the local alternative weekly newspaper that is also the original sponsor of SXSW. This week’s (April 16) issue has an article, “Blog Justice On The Wild Web.” It should be available online at austinchronicle.com.

    Danah, you should look me up next year. Stealing is like, way, way down on the list of things I’d like to do with you.

    And, oh yeah, I’m pretty sure the guy in the second picture is Eddie Murphy.

  • Tiffany

    Man, danah, I’m really sorry about the theft and now this thread of posts about racism. The first few posts (about using online social networks) were great, though. Reminds me of a summer job from long, long ago. :) I hope you get reimbursed for your loss, and I hope the thieves are punished appropriately. Things like this really shake my faith in humanity, which isn’t strong enough to begin with.

    P.S. I’m coming to Cal in the fall!

  • Kim

    I’m sorry for what you’ve experienced, but I’m concerned about the posting of someone’s picture coupled with the direct accusation. If you were a student in my journalism class, I would tell you that you’ve opened yourself up for lible charges and you’ve made it less likely that prosecutors could get a conviction should these alleged thieves ever be caught and brought to trial. It seems to me that using a blog for this purpose could quickly devolve into vigilantism. What I could have understood more readily would have been for your to say that you had been robbed, and ask anyone who might have information to contact whatever detective had been put on your case. I could even have understood posting the pictures, asking for help identifying the people, and saying that the police would like to talk to them. When you make the direct accusation in this way, however, you hand a future defense attorney the ammunition to combat a conviction. I’m sure that can’t be what you intended.

  • Kim

    I’m sorry for what you’ve experienced, but I’m concerned about the posting of someone’s picture coupled with the direct accusation. If you were a student in my journalism class, I would tell you that you’ve opened yourself up for lible charges and you’ve made it less likely that prosecutors could get a conviction should these alleged thieves ever be caught and brought to trial. It seems to me that using a blog for this purpose could quickly devolve into vigilantism. What I could have understood more readily would have been for your to say that you had been robbed, and ask anyone who might have information to contact whatever detective had been put on your case. I could even have understood posting the pictures, asking for help identifying the people, and saying that the police would like to talk to them. When you make the direct accusation in this way, however, you hand a future defense attorney the ammunition to combat a conviction. I’m sure that can’t be what you intended.

  • igor

    Wow, Who ever said she was white?

    na, What is the difference between theft & robbery? and what does your personal story have to do with this one?

    interesting thread for all the side issues.

  • Blog justice and its discontents.

    Last week, Austin Chronicle writer Courtney Fitzgerald e-mailed me about a piece on danah boyd’s purse controversy. She said I…

  • Joe

    Hey, Kim. If I was a student in your journalism class I’d tell you that the word “libel” is not spelled “lible.”

    Another thing …. you’re a purported journalism teacher for God’s sake, not a defense attorney …. so stop trying to act like one.

    Bottom line … The Jerks who stole this girl’s stuff deserve to have their pictures posted, and once their names become known … and known they will become …. any smart Austin assistant district attorney will have no problem filing charges against these scum.

    Oh, Kim, by the way, have you noticed that the thieves who stole this girls stuff haven’t come on here to “complain” about the “unfair treatment” they have experienced?

    Scum like this would steal your stuff in a New York … or in this case … An Austin Minute … and don’t believe they wouldn’t.

  • right

    It happens all the time to me when I’m walking down the street and some guy asks me out, and I say no thanks, and if they are black I almost always hear, “what, you don’t like black guys?” It’s a guilt trip, some people use them.

    Get off of your high horse, lower your nose, and give us all a break. Like you’re so stunning, people ask you out on the street all the time. And I’m sure you’re not an elitist, and you reply with a curt, “No thanks.” Right.

  • B

    Mr. Right (ha!):

    People stare, mutter, wolf-whistle, and sexually harass me on the street on the time, and I am not stunning, nor dressed revealingly, nor any other excuse you might be able to come up with for this behavior. Are you really implying that a woman who turns down a come-on from a stranger on the street is being snooty? That sort of thinking is right next to “it’s just appreciation.” Like hell it is.

    I am simply a woman, and that gives many men the idea that I am fair game.

    Good luck catching the thieves, Denah. As for the racism accusation:

    “It’s because I have one arm, isn’t it?”
    “No! Listen carefully! You have one arm, AND you’re a shitty drummer!”

  • B

    Mr. Right (ha!):

    People stare, mutter, wolf-whistle, and sexually harass me on the street on the time, and I am not stunning, nor dressed revealingly, nor any other excuse you might be able to come up with for this behavior. Are you really implying that a woman who turns down a come-on from a stranger on the street is being snooty? That sort of thinking is right next to “it’s just appreciation.” Like hell it is.

    I am simply a woman, and that gives many men the idea that I am fair game.

    Good luck catching the thieves, Denah. As for the racism accusation:

    “It’s because I have one arm, isn’t it?”
    “No! Listen carefully! You have one arm, AND you’re a shitty drummer!”

  • Bluejay

    What is taking them so long to find the thieves since they have photos.Austin PD isn’t doing very well.Sorry Danah, hope these guys are caught.Whoever saw the dude in the bathroom going through a purse and did not realize what was happening must have been very drunk indeed. In a party situation,always keep your valuables on you or in sight,even if they are people you know becausepeople get stupid and desperate at times.Especially if you are travelling, you want to get home right?

  • The Blogsphere has spoken

    apophenia: pictures of my robbers I am really amazed to have stumbled across this. I hope that they find these guys and bring them to justice. I think if every victim of crime utilized the power of the Blogsphere, crime…

  • To Blog a Thief

    Have we bridged the digital divide enough to use the Internet as a viable way to accomplish societal tasks? The Internet is a gathering spot and hangout for some, but is it a way of life for enough people to…

  • mabel

    That’s what you get for letting a bunch of thugs into your apt. You couldn’t tell by looking at these guys that they would do something like that to you. Hope you learned a valuable lesson.

  • What the hell, Mabel?

    Jesus, Mabel, are you retarded? You can tell these people are felons just by looking at them? You know what lurks in hearts of men? What the hell, are you the Shadow?
    Her lesson is to keep her shit with her, not to not party with black people. Christ.
    (But of course, maybe that’s what one can expect from a poster named Mabel, fer chrissakes. See? Stereotypes are f-u-n fun!)

  • Squishy

    Kim, thank you for being the voice of reason here.

    Joe, you’re the village idiot.

    I hope the people who committed this crime get caught and prosecuted.

    If you didn’t see it WITH YOUR OWN EYES, you can’t be 100% sure, can you?

    It is EXTREMLY LIKELY that this guy stole from you. It is not a fact.

    I thought we still opperated under the assumption that people were INNOCENT until proven guilly in a court of law.

  • heather

    Just wanted to put my $0.02 in.

    I am so sorry this happened to you here in Austin. A city that I live in and love.

    I will look out for these guys. I have a GREAT memory and if I see them I will keep this link as a bookmark – you never know.

    As far as being an idiot about letting these guys in to the party – I don’t think so…you see guys come in and they are out of place but in our society there are two different types of people – those who are negative and don’t try to make this a better world and those of us (myself included) who are trying to make it a better place and accept everyone equally. I applaud you on not being judgemental and I hiss at those guys for being asses – they should pay as they did in the old times….

    Now – to back up APD – these guys are busy. Yeah it may seem like they don’t do anything but think about how many pictures they do get of people who are criminals on a daily basis. All they can do is post up pictures in a book of some sort and it’s basically up to the general public to identify them. I know I can’t remember every persons face I see in passing – that is basically how it is for them.

    The best thing to do is post their pictures up where “Austin” related things happen. I found this link through Craigslist – who knows how many others have seen it.

    I wish you well in persuing these jerks and hope that it does not taint your feelings about Austin. I guess the only thing is you learned a lesson from this. If you are having a party somewhere, lock the purse in the trunk of your car and keep your cell phone with you or in the locked mode.

    Good Luck – Heather from Austin

  • Dub

    All right…. here’s my spin:
    1) given the numerous accounts of this situation, I think it’s exceedingly likely that these guys stole from you. Not 100% but damn near….
    2) Spotting strange people at your party and wondering “Who the hell are these guys?” does not make you a racist, even if you are white, they are black, or whatever. Smart people (and austin is full of them) recognize the vibe that a person brings to the table, and if that vibe is strange, manipulative, deceptive, shady, or negative, a smart (or intuitive) person can often feel that. This is not racism, it is intuition, and it is one of the greatest tools we have.
    3) slinging accusations of racism, claiming that the story is invalid/flawed/full of holes, and other such activity is completely out of place for someone who does not know the original poster, or who didn’t go to the party or who has no direct experience of the situation. People who do these kinds of things are the reason that the power of the internet is dilluted. Unfortunately, open communication makes for open tangents into stupid territory. Please shut up.
    4)Never feel guity about exercising discretion in the people you associate with. Ever. When shady people show up, kick them out, regardless of race/age/sexual orientation/religion/where they ate lunch. End of story.

    I truly hope that somehow you find these guys. A very big part of me hopes that somehow this thread will lead to some kind of information. That would be an awesome moment.
    “Austin Bloggers Trump Detectives in Fraud Case, Superior Resources/Intelligence/Dedication Cited”
    Best of luck friend. My apologies to anyone who may have been upset by my post, I intend no harm…..

  • diana

    Ive never posted anything on a website like this, but I was searching for things to do in Minnesota, and I came across this place. I have a few things I’d like to say…..

    First off, I do believe those 6 black guys stole those things. If nobody knew them, that means they didnt know anyone there, so they wouldnt care if someone they didnt know was missing something valuable. (if you can understand that)

    Second, Im from Minnesota, and I live in a town of about 20,000 people. I was born and raised here. For 25 years I have seen people come and go, and in the last 5 years or so parts of this town have become “black neighborhoods”. They were once very nice neighborhoods. Now, a $200,000 house is going on the market for $80,000. Nobody wants to live in those neighborhoods because of the crimes. There have been murders, auto thefts, vandalism, and BURGLARIES. There may have been burglaries in the past (before “they” moved to town), but nothing like it is now. I, myself have had things stolen. I live about 3 blocks from where they congregate. I have had my daughters bike stolen, car stereo, shoes, and even a $10 cooler! From my garage, to boot. All these crimes are done by black people. Its a proven fact. Our crime rate has shot up in the last 4 years 700%!!!

    My point is, is that if you are black, and you are sick of being discriminated against, STOP DOING THINGS THAT MAKE PEOPLE DISCRIMINATE AGAINST YOU!!!!!! Stop dealing drugs! Stop stealing! Stop hanging out on the street corner all day and GET A DAMN JOB!!! Stop having more kids just so you can get more WELFARE!

    As for those black people out there that have jobs, and work to make a living, and dont commit crimes, you are the people that dont deserve discrimination. You should be proud of yourself.

    And as for the person that got things stolen, go with your feelings. If you feel they stole from you, they probably did……….

  • diana

    Ive never posted anything on a website like this, but I was searching for things to do in Minnesota, and I came across this place. I have a few things I’d like to say…..

    First off, I do believe those 6 black guys stole those things. If nobody knew them, that means they didnt know anyone there, so they wouldnt care if someone they didnt know was missing something valuable. (if you can understand that)

    Second, Im from Minnesota, and I live in a town of about 20,000 people. I was born and raised here. For 25 years I have seen people come and go, and in the last 5 years or so parts of this town have become “black neighborhoods”. They were once very nice neighborhoods. Now, a $200,000 house is going on the market for $80,000. Nobody wants to live in those neighborhoods because of the crimes. There have been murders, auto thefts, vandalism, and BURGLARIES. There may have been burglaries in the past (before “they” moved to town), but nothing like it is now. I, myself have had things stolen. I live about 3 blocks from where they congregate. I have had my daughters bike stolen, car stereo, shoes, and even a $10 cooler! From my garage, to boot. All these crimes are done by black people. Its a proven fact. Our crime rate has shot up in the last 4 years 700%!!!

    My point is, is that if you are black, and you are sick of being discriminated against, STOP DOING THINGS THAT MAKE PEOPLE DISCRIMINATE AGAINST YOU!!!!!! Stop dealing drugs! Stop stealing! Stop hanging out on the street corner all day and GET A DAMN JOB!!! Stop having more kids just so you can get more WELFARE!

    As for those black people out there that have jobs, and work to make a living, and dont commit crimes, you are the people that dont deserve discrimination. You should be proud of yourself.

    And as for the person that got things stolen, go with your feelings. If you feel they stole from you, they probably did……….

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