Widely-mocked 'sketchy' drawing of suspect actually leads to an ID


After a homeless man allegedly posed as an employee at a Central Market stand in Pennsylvania and made off on foot with cash from customers, a witness to the theft provided police with a hand-drawn sketch of the perpetrator for police.

The theft occurred at a farmer's market in Lancaster, PA on January 30, when a man pretended to be an employee at a stand while the actual employee was away and took money from the business, WPMT reported. But police defended their decision to release the drawing. Anyone with information on this incident or the identity of the suspect is asked to contact Lancaster Police at 717-735-3300.

The day before, the Lancaster police force had put out a detailed description of the suspect which included a sketch drawn by a civilian witness. The male is believed to be South American or Asian.

An amateur witness sketch proved to be no laughing matter after authorities were able to identify a man accused of a theft last month.

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'While the sketch provided by the witness may have appeared amateurish and cartoonish, it, along with the distinctive physical descriptors, jogged the memory of at least one investigator to provide a potential suspect name, ' Lancaster Bureau of Police officials said on Wednesday in a Crime Watch blog post. And posted below a picture of the sketch photoshopped on top of his roommate's face.

Another person said the sketch looked like a popular musician and backed up the assertion by noting the title of one of the performer's actual albums. One user even quipped, "That guy does look pretty sketchy".

Since the release of the Nguyen's image, one commentator appeared to change his position: "As much as I laughed at the sketch, it wasn't entirely that far off".