Pokémon Go exploded over the weekend because it's a genuinely fun game—it mixes the 90s nostalgia of Pokémon with a real-world scavenger hunt, and it gets people doing moderate exercise to boot (this is all an insidious plot by Michelle Obama, bet on it). Unfortunately, it also has been getting people discovering dead bodies, walking into traffic, and—alas—now getting robbed.
That's right, some mastermind thieves in Missouri figured out that by placing a 99-cent lure at a Pokéstop in a deserted location, they could attract lots of nerds looking for 185 CP Bulbasaurs. But good luck getting through their pocket protectors, amiright?
The O'Fallon Missouri Police Department posted about the crime on Facebook:
The post reads:
UPDATE INFORMATION BELOW-This morning at approximately 2 am we responded to the report of an Armed Robbery near the intersection of Highway K and Feise Road. We were able to locate four suspects occupying a black BMW a short time later and recover a handgun. These suspects are suspected of multiple Armed Robberies both in St. Louis and St. Charles Counties. It is believed these suspects targeted their victims through the Pokemon Go smart phone application.
Many of you have heard of Pokemon Go, but for those that have not, it is a type of Geo Caching game where you find and capture Pokemon characters at various locations. If you use this app (or other similar type apps) or have children that do we ask you to please use caution when alerting strangers of your future location.
**Many of you have asked how the app was used to rob victims, the way we believe it was used is you can add a beacon to a pokestop to lure more players. Apparently they were using the app to locate ppl standing around in the middle of a parking lot or whatever other location they were in.**
Pokéstops are places of interest in your city—things like statues, interesting architectural features, landmarks, and murals are all often Pokéstops (that must be one interesting parking lot). Players can add "lures" to the Pokéstops, meaning that every player can find Pokémon at that location (gotta catch 'em all, you see). All Pokéstops are marked on a Google Map-like interface, and Pokéstops with a lure are denoted by the presence of falling pink flower petals. And yes, this game doesn't make much sense when you think about it.
Be careful out there! And go Team Mystic!