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Mon, March 25

Skype call gives away stolen laptop suspect



A woman who accidentally made a video call while she allegedly stole a laptop was later identified by the victim and arrested by Prescott police.

"This incident was unusual," said Lt. Andy Reinhardt, Prescott Police Department spokesman. "I'd never heard of it happening here before."

Christine Michele Tubbs, 43, of Prescott was booked into the Yavapai County Jail in Camp Verde on charges of second-degree burglary Sept. 7.

Tubbs reportedly admitted to police that she entered the victim's apartment through an unlocked back door moments after the victim left the building.

"Tubbs told officers that she had seen her upstairs neighbor's phone number on her boyfriend's phone and wanted to know if she was emailing her boyfriend," Reinhardt said. "Tubbs told officers she took the laptop to see what information was on it, and (accidentally) called somebody on Skype."

Skype is an application that lets users make voice and video calls over the Internet.

The man Tubbs inadvertently called told officers that he had just finished talking to the victim on Skype when two minutes later he received another call from her computer.

The man told officers he saw a Caucasian woman between 30 and 40 years old with brown hair wearing a blue robe or gown in the video chat, and she told him, "You don't know who my family is. I'm Sicilian," according to the police report.

The man told officers he couldn't understand much more because the woman appeared to be intoxicated, so after a minute and 40 seconds he ended the call, called the victim and described the woman to her, according to the police report.

The victim told officers the description of the woman matched Tubbs, her downstairs neighbor, and officers noted that Tubbs matched the description of the person in the video call, according to the police report.

Tubbs told the detective and officers that after making the Skype call, she closed the computer, took it to her apartment, tried to access the email unsuccessfully and put the computer under her bed, Reinhardt said.

Officers returned the laptop to the victim after taking photos for evidence.


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