Monday, June 2, 2014

Police Investigate Axe-Murder Captured On Google Street View

Standing over his lifeless victim wielding an axe, this is the shocking Google Street View image that sparked a major police investigation. 

Police were called when a Street View user came across the image taken in Leith, Edinburgh and reported it as a possible murder caught on camera. But the two men in the shot were actually a pair of mischievous mechanics. 

Dan Thomson, 56, and Gary Kerr, 31, staged the fake homicide as a joke when Google’s camera car passed by their garage on Giles Street. 

Dan, the garage boss who posed as a murder victim, said: ‘I recognised the Google car coming into the street from the camera tower on the top. 

We just thought we had to do something. ‘This opportunity wasn’t coming around very often so Gary grabbed a pick axe handle and we ran out into the street. ‘Giles Street is in a U-shape so we had about a minute before it would pass us. 

It had to go around a car park to take various shots so that gave us some time.’ The pranksters staged the fake homicide last summer and almost forgot about it as several months passed before the footage went online. 

Dan first heard from friends and family – including his son – who had spotted the scene, but was mortified when real cops came to the garage to investigate reports of his death. 

Mechanic Gary, who posed as the axe-wielding maniac, added: ‘I had seen various stunts that people pulled on Street View in the paper so we thought this was our chance. ‘It was all Dan’s thinking. 

He was the mastermind.’ Launched in 2007, Google Street View provides panoramic views of streets and roads after being captured by Google’s car mounted cameras. 

Pranksters from all over the world have managed to get their own staged scenes onto the database, while others have been caught unsuspectingly by the Google car.

Famous images captured include a man picking his nose while driving his car and a
pair of snorkellers wandering down a street. The website has even caught a
marriage proposal on camera.

A police spokeswoman said officers treated all reports of suspected crime seriously.

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