By The Editors of

Deep undercover
German police in Bochum used a mail-order catalog to help solve the case of a serial burglar in the North Rhine-Westphalia town. Police suspected the burglar who had been nabbing laptops around town had a hideout and stash in a local forest. So officers purchased a pair of tree costumes for about $130 each out of a catalog and waited for delivery. Once the costumes arrived, two cops donned the outfits and made way for the area of the forest identified by a tipster. The two officers reportedly waited for eight hours-looking either like a small Christmas tree while standing or a heap of moss while seated-before the burglar returned to his lair. After a brief struggle in their costumes, police arrested a 39-year-old Romanian man who allegedly traveled to Germany to commit the burglaries.

Winner saves all
lottery winner in New York promises his $3 million prize from a
scratch-off game won’t change his life. “I don’t want this to change my
style of living,” Milton Dominguez Estrada, 47, told The New York Post.
“I will continue to work.” And that’s exactly what he did. After
winning the lotto on a lunch break on Oct. 17, Estrada says he
“[calmed] myself down and [went] back to work.” The Long Island school
janitor opted for an annual payout of $150,000 a year for the next 20
years. Estrada said he would take a “long-awaited vacation” but save
the rest for his three children’s college education.

Illustration by Krieg BarrieLawnmower men
If a riding lawnmower ambling through downtown Glen Falls, N.Y., just after midnight on Nov. 14 wasn’t enough indication of foul play, a man riding on the hood of the mower gave watching police all the probable cause necessary for an unusual traffic stop. When officer Seth French approached the two men-driver Donald L. Johnson and rider Carl W. Critelli-the 42-year-old Johnson was not only drunk, but also admitted he had been smoking marijuana. Johnson attempted to explain that he was taking the mower to a local pub-in order to sell it. Police charged Johnson with driving while impaired and dealt him 10 traffic tickets. Critelli was cited for not wearing a safety belt.