Swiss police department reveal their strangest crimes of 2023

Swiss police department reveal their strangest crimes of 2023

From high-octane chases to facing a protest and cracking a tricky case wide open, the police in Switzerland are often front and centre of serious news. However, while it makes up less of the job, officers still encounter some rather peculiar things when on patrol: the Cantonal Police of St. Gallen have now showcased the strangest crime stories in the canton in 2023.

1. The sleepy burglar of Buchs

Our first story involves the sleepy burglar of Buchs. According to the cantonal police, the man - who was observed to be very drunk - was caught stealing from a clothing store in the centre of the town, before somehow successfully fleeing the scene.

Luckily, the police did not have to look far to find the man. After evading the police, he thought it a tactical move of Napoleonic proportions to fall asleep on a bench in Grünaustrasse. He was then woken up by officers, arrested and treated for his heavy head.

2. Carjacker discovers cake and eats it

Next is the case of someone who quite literally had their cake and ate it: in Oberuzwil back in May, a man was reported to have successfully broken into a vehicle. However, instead of making good his escape, he discovered a cake in the back of the car.

Onlookers then saw him eating half the cake before driving off into the distance. St. Gallen police reminded Blick that no valuables - including pastries - should be left in the car. The cake bandit remains at large.

3. Drunk driver chooses to sleep it off next to police station

Next on the list is another driver whose poor decision-making can only be matched by his level of inebriation. On his way home from St. Gallen, the drunk and quite tired motorist decided to do part of the right thing by pulling over to sleep it off.

Unfortunately for him, in his infinite wisdom, the man had chosen the parking lot of a police station to take his nap. When confronted by officers, the man tested way over the drink-drive limit and his driving licence was revoked.

4. Fraudsters use shredded paper to pay for Swiss watch

Swiss watches are not known to be cheap, so perhaps it's no surprise that some would-be thieves find some novel ways to make off with a designer wristwatch. According to St. Gallen police, one such heist occurred when a man tried to sell his watch to two strangers for 4.000 francs.

During the transaction, the two fraudsters showed the man an envelope full of money. Then, once the watch was handed over, the two swapped the envelope for an identical one full of shredded paper. Amazingly, at the time of writing, the two actually managed to get away with it!

5. Man locked inside store after visiting bathroom

Finally, it’s the fear of any person desperately trying to find the right gift at the last minute. In November of this year, a man was visiting a store in Haag when he decided to visit the bathroom. By the time he had finished his ablutions, the store had been closed and the man was locked in.

Faced with a night in creepy isolation, the man decided to call the police. Soon, a patrol was at the shop to let the man out.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Editor for Switzerland at IamExpat Media. Jan studied History at the University of York and Broadcast Journalism at the University of Sheffield. Though born in York, Jan has lived most...

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