Here's a little tip: If you're going to steal a case of beer, don't do it right in front of a surveillance camera... and definitely don't do it if you look just like a celebrity. On October 22, the Blackpool police in Lancashire, UK released an image of a suspect who walked out of a store with a case of beer. The image quickly swept the internet because, at first glance, the thief appeared to be iconic Friends actor, David Schwimmer. Schwimmer has since responded to his lookalike robbery suspect in the most hilarious way.
On October 22, the Blackpool police asked, "Do you recognise this man?" on Facebook. "We want to speak to him in relation to a theft at a Blackpool restaurant on the 20th September... Thank you for your help." The post included a video of a guy looking straight at the camera and walking away with a case of beer. By October 24, Schwimmer had recreated the crime in a video that's well on its way to breaking the internet.
"Officers, I swear it wasn't me," the actor captioned the hilarious tweet. "As you can see, I was in New York. To the hardworking Blackpool Police, good luck with the investigation. #itwasntme." Okay, okay, we get it. The video was masterfully done — in full view of products with the Yankees logo on them so fans could tell he wasn't across the pond.
Check it out here:
It's goofy enough that this dude committed such a lame crime. A grown man taking beer in front of a camera? Come on. But the fact that he looked like a celebrity — David Schwimmer, of all people — is just so funny. Inexplicably so. He really did look like him — enough to cause an uneasy, "uncanny valley" reaction in this writer. The guy looks more like Schwimmer than Schwimmer did in that Friends episode when he played Rachel's mopey boyfriend, Russ. Still, good on him for playing along in the most extreme way he could.
Fans of Friends jumped on the story instantly, but best of all was when official news organizations got in on it. Any random person on Twitter can pull off a good roast, but when the BBC is referencing specific episodes of Friends, you know it's a magical day. BBC Newsbeat joked the suspect "pivoted" to evade capture, and Entertainment Weekly wrote that an unnamed "commenter" listed potential aliases for the suspect that all turned out to be Friends-related jokes. Classic.
Somehow, the story only gets better.
According to CNN, interest in the case swelled online to the point that Blackpool police felt compelled to make a statement: "Thank you to everyone for your speedy responses,” the police said, per CNN. “We have investigated this matter thoroughly and have confirmed that David Schwimmer was in America on this date. We’re so sorry it has to be this way.”
Literally, the local police issued a statement to the news clearing Schwimmer's name.
It's all proof that sometimes, once in a while, the news can produce good things. And hey, good for Schwimmer for clearing his own name.
Even if it had to be this way.