Opinion Brief

The cat burglar who's actually a cat

A klepto kitty named Dusty has stolen hundreds of items from his California neighbors over the last three years

The video: A devious house cat in San Mateo, Calif., has committed a string of the cutest robberies imaginable. Dusty, a 6-year-old mixed breed feline, has pilfered about 600 items from neighbors' yards over the past three years, including towels, underwear, shoes (retrieved one at a time), and children's toys. In a local news report (see video below), Dusty's owners say that he typically goes on the prowl at night and returns in the morning with a pinched memento or two — in one memorable run, he stole 11 different items. His most common target: bathing suits drying outside.
The reaction:
Dusty's burglaries "may seem benign," says The Huffington Post. But what if other neighborhood cats get the same idea? "You would have to call those cats something clever, something like 'cat mimics,' or 'cat copiers' or 'cats committing crimes similar to another cats'...we'll think of something." Alex Balk at The Awl says that viewers of this news report should "be forewarned that this segment ends with the line, "It's a purr-fect night for a heist." Excepting that, "it is two minutes of pure American local news delight." Watch an exposé on the (literal) cat burglar:

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