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A Band of Neighbors Used Duct Tape to Catch an Intruder

They also had some firearms, which probably helped, too.

Duct tape is a marvel of modern adhesive engineering. It has helped with successful moon landings, unsuccessful boat journeys, and has even inspired a festival where people craft giant, vaguely horrifying sculptures. It is also a fantastic way to tie up a would-be criminal when one breaks into your neighbor's house, apparently.

That's what happened when a burglar broke into a home in Albuquerque, New Mexico, last weekend. KRQE reports that a man named Mark Thompson allegedly broke into a Northern Albuquerque house Sunday afternoon and quickly made himself at home—he grabbed a beer, tried on a jacket, and then sat down to watch some TV.


Unfortunately for Thompson, the homeowner had his place wired up with security cameras, and got a notification on his phone alerting him that someone was in the house while he was out. He called up his across-the-street neighbors and enlisted them in a plan—one that involved some handguns and a strong-ass roll of duct tape.

The neighbors—Shandra Vestal and her husband Micah—jumped to help their friend in need.

"We got two pistols," Vestal told KRQE. "As [the homeowner] pulled in, I passed him this 45 and then I got the other Ruger."

The gun-wielding neighborhood vigilantes busted in on Thompson, who was probably gearing up to watch Storage Wars or whatever is on TV on Sunday afternoon. "Micah and I went into the home with two of the loaded weapons. Micah announced himself to the perpetrator saying, 'I have a loaded weapon, get down on your hands and knees.'" Thompson did, and Vestal quickly tied his hands and feet with her trusty roll of duct tape.

That's how the police found him: hog-tied and lying face down on the lawn, where the neighbors dragged the would-be crook after taking him down.

"He truly said, 'I'm not trying to steal anything, I just want to be friends,'" Vestal remembers. Sure, it's hard to make friends as an adult, but a B&E probably isn't the move. At least he helped to bring the neighborhood together.