Alleged Louisville thief outwitted by smart phone tech when pict - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Alleged Louisville thief outwitted by smart phone tech when picture taken during crime

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Joseph Avery (Source: Louisville Metro Corrections) Joseph Avery (Source: Louisville Metro Corrections)
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Police say a thief was outwitted by digital technology when his picture was taken as he tried to access a stolen smart phone.

According to an arrest report, the victim had left his smart phone on the counter of the Dollar Store at the corner of Blue Lick Road and S. Park Road, at around noon on Friday. A short time later it was gone.

Police say the phone had been taken by 39-year-old Joseph Scott Avery, who took it to his home on Tuesday Way, near the corner of Outer Loop and Preston Highway. 

While there, he allegedly tried to gain access to the phone, which was protected by a password lock and a fingerprint scanner. Police say Avery tried several times to access the phone, and after failing repeatedly, the phone automatically took a picture of him and sent it to the victim.

Police say the victim printed out a copy of the picture, and was able to use the GPS to track his phone to Avery's house.

Police confronted Avery just before 9 p.m. He allegedly admitted to taking the phone, but claimed he was just trying to find out who it belonged to. He said that after he was unable to access the phone -- and got his picture taken -- he decided that he would take it back to the Dollar Store and give it to the manager.

The phone was returned to the victim, but according to the arrest report, the victim discovered that there were new phone numbers on his phone. The victim believed that Avery tried to plug his own SIM card into the phone in an attempt to gain access to it.

Police theorized that, if Avery truly planned on giving the phone back, "he would have given it to the manager of the business when he initially found it, instead of taking it home, trying to gain access to the phone and not answering the phone when the victim tried calling it repeatedly, and then trying to put his SIM card in it or put phone numbers in it that the suspect knew."

Avery was arrested and charged with theft of property mislaid or delivered by mistake.

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