It’s Not a Great Idea to Allegedly Vandalize a Police Station Minutes After Being Released From Said Police Station

Illustration by Robert Neubecker.

Illustration by Robert Neubecker

Name: Jason Rodriguez

Alleged crime: Vandalism

Fatal mistake: Extremely poor impulse control

The circumstances: There’s a reason why graffitists tend to tag railroad boxcars, abandoned houses, or dilapidated buildings like the one I live in. Those sorts of structures are already sort of grimy, and nobody really cares if they’re vandalized further. The same cannot be said for a police station.

As reports, a California man named Jason Rodriguez was arrested Wednesday on drug charges. The Chula Vista, Calif., police released Rodriguez early Thursday morning, after he provided a written promise that he would appear in court. Even though the police were done with Rodriguez for the moment, Rodriguez allegedly wasn’t done with the police. Here’s

Minutes after his release, police say Rodriguez walked to the front entrance of the police department and allegedly used an unknown object to etch the letters “AROX” into a glass lobby door.

The department was closed for the night, so officers didn’t see Rodriguez committing the vandalism. Hours later, a member of the custodial staff discovered the damage and notified officials.

The Chula Vista Watch Commander reviewed security video and determined the vandalism—estimated at $2,000 in damages—was caused by Rodriguez.

The perfect crime, Rodriguez may have been thinking. But, see, the thing with police stations is that they’re filled with cameras, and, just as importantly, police officers. When cops view the footage captured by those cameras, they are likely to recognize the genius defacing their door as the guy whom they just booked and released hours earlier. Rodriguez was arrested at his house later that morning. This time around, they’re holding him on $10,000 bail.

How he could have been a lot smarter: If you absolutely must vandalize a police station—which, honestly, I do not recommend—be sure to wear a mask, or a fake beard, or something else to conceal your identity. I realize Rodriguez was just released from custody, and may not have had a mask or beard on him at the time, but, in that case, cover your head with your shirt or something.

How he could have been a little smarter: He could have written “AROD” instead of “AROX,” thus giving the Chula Vista police reason to suspect the worst of disgraced baseball slugger Alex Rodriguez, which everyone is inclined to do anyway.

How he could have been a little dumber: He could have attempted to vandalize the station while it was actually open, which would have caused him to get arrested even sooner.

How he could have been a lot dumber: Etched his address, phone number, and emergency contact information.  

Ultimate Dumbness Ranking (UDR): Like everyone else, I sometimes have the urge to stick it to the man. But there are good and bad methods of sticking. Suffice it to say that defacing a police station from which you were just released is not one of the good methods. 7.5 out of 10 for Jason Rodriguez.

Previous Dumb Criminals:

The Guy Who Allegedly Tried to Rob a Gun Shop with a Baseball Bat
The Three Guys Who Accidentally Butt-Dialed 911 Mid-Crime
The Alleged Burglar Who Fell Asleep on a Bear Skin Mid-Burglary
The Alleged Disability Insurance Scammers Whose Frauds Got Caught on Camera
The Pimply Guy Who Stole a Bunch of Bus Transfers
The Guy Who Tried to Outrun the Cops on a Very, Very Slow-Moving Moped
The Drunk Driver Who Boasted About It on Facebook
The Guy Who Gave the Cops an Absolutely Terrible Fake Name
The Job Candidate Who Told the FBI about His Child Porn Stash