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Lesson 7 Some Bizarre Criminals

· Why do people steal things?

· Have you ever had anything stolen from you?

· Have you ever stolen anything?

· Do you think your country is a safe place to live?

· Have you ever seen a crime?

· Is it ever okay to break the law? Why?

· Have you ever broken the law? Why?

Read these stories about some bizarre criminals.

· A thief was arrested after he was found asleep in a pub he was robbing after he tried some expensive liquor. The 42-year-old man entered the pub through the roof and started to load his pockets with money and whatever he could find. Then, he tried some whiskey and other drinks but could not stop. The pub’s owner found him in the morning. The owner called the police but not before writing the burglar's bill which was about $120. The thief was charged with burglary and faces at least three years in jail. The police said the man had robbed another bar the day before.

· Another thief broke into a residential home but did not plan his crime very well. He entered the house and quickly unhooked and removed two television sets, a VCR player, and some stereo equipment. Then, he remembered that he was on foot and had no way of getting the stolen goods back to his apartment. He worked hard to steal all that stuff and didn't want to leave it behind, so he called a taxi. He stacked all the equipment on the sidewalk, sat down, and waited for the taxi to arrive. When the taxi arrived, the driver helped the man load all of the equipment into the truck. The thief jumped in and gave the driver his address. The driver thought the situation was a bit strange, so he called the police. The cops arrived at the thief’s house and immediately arrested him.

· An employee at Edwards Elementary School stole one of the school's refrigerators and took it home. When she got home she discovered the refrigerator wasn't working. She called a repairman to fix it, but not just any repairman. She called the school system's maintenance department. The repairman came to her house and recognized the refrigerator. He told the woman that he knew she had stolen the fridge but she did not offer the man ‘hush’ money to keep it a secret. She didn't even offer him money for fixing the fridge. The maintenance man called the police and the woman was arrested and fired from her job.

· A purse-snatcher was arrested after he chose the wrong person as his victim. The man, who was suspected of a string of handbag robberies, sped past his last victim on his motorcycle and lifted her purse without slowing down. As he turned around to see the surprise on his victim's face, he realized he had made a stupid mistake. The woman was his mother. She immediately reported the incident to the police and said she believed her son was stealing purses to finance his drug habit. The next time the mother and son were reunited it was in a courtroom.


Comprehension Questions:

1. Where was the first thief caught?

2. Why was he sleeping?

3. Who found him in the morning?

4. How much was his bill?

5. What was he charged with?

6. What did the second thief break into?

7. What did he try to steal?

8. What did he call?

9. What did the taxi driver think?

10. Who did the taxi driver call?

11. Where did the third thief work?

12. What did she try to steal?

13. What did she discover when she got home?

14. Who did she call?

15. What did she tell the repairman?

16. Why was the purse-snatcher arrested?

17. How did he steal the purse?

18. Who was the woman?

19. What did she do?

20. Where were they next reunited?

Discussion Questions:

1. Is your city a safe place to live? Why?

2. Does your city have any dangerous areas? Where are they?

3. Are you afraid to walk outside after dark? Why?

4. Do you know anyone who has been robbed? If so, what happened?

5. Have you ever been robbed? Have you ever had something stolen from you?

6. If a person steals a loaf of bread to feed his starving family, should he be punished? Why?

7. Is it ever okay to break the law? If so, when?

8. What are some things people can do to protect themselves from crime?

9. What are some things that are legal but you personally think should be illegal?

10. What are some things that are illegal but you personally think should be legal?

11. What crimes have you heard about recently in the news?

12. What do you think is the worst crime a person could commit? Why?

13. What crimes do you think will increase in the future? Why?

14. What crimes do you think will decrease in the future? Why?

15. Does your country have the death penalty? If so, for what crimes can people receive the death penalty?

16. Do you think the death penalty is a fair punishment? Why?

17. Are there any reasonable alternatives to the death penalty? What?


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