It seems a Black couple in Philadelphia found the thought of instantaneous riches in the form of stolen jewels a worthy addition to their family if it merely meant the subtraction of their young child:
There is no truth to the rumor that this is one of the children denied access to the swimming pool in the summer of 2009, but it is obvious that the interjection of a young child into the heist of precious jewelry created an excellent slight-of-hand.
IT'S ONLY MARCH, and one couple is already in the running for the dual distinction of year's worst parents and dumbest criminals.
After robbing a South Street jeweler with their 4-year-old son in tow Saturday afternoon, police said, John Benson and Sheakia Stubbs abandoned their boy on a nearby street, leaving the store owner they'd robbed and slashed to care for their child.
The son they left behind then helped identify his parents to police and both were arrested shortly after midnight yesterday when they returned to a room that Stubbs had rented at the Hub Motel on Roosevelt Boulevard, police said.
"I'm glad the child told on his parents - that's what they get!" said Derrick Tucker, who lives across the hall from Stubbs and her son at the West Park Hi-Rise in West Philadelphia.
Neighbors said Stubbs has lived there for less than four months but brought plenty of drama to the floor.
Benson, 47, who lived on Franklin Street near Fairmount Avenue, would come and go from Stubbs' apartment, but most of the time he would go, because Stubbs, 31, was fond of throwing him out, Tucker said.
"He'd be sitting in the hallway - a lot - just sitting there with his bag and occasionally pounding on the door," Tucker said.
Aside from the fact that her son was still in diapers at the age of 4, neighbors said there were no overt signs that Stubbs was a bad mother.
"We would have never thought something would happen with her, with the dad, maybe, but she played her role pretty good," Tucker said.
Neighbors said police kicked Stubbs' door down Saturday night and returned again Sunday.
South Detectives Capt. Laurence Nodiff said police tracked the couple to the Hub Motel.
They were taken into custody without incident, police said.
"They didn't ask us anything about their son," said Scott Brous, one of the arresting officers.
Nor did the boy's extended family in the area contact police after his photograph was released to numerous media outlets over the weekend, Nodiff said.
The boy, whose name has not been released, remains in Department of Human Services custody, according to police.
Nodiff said there's a "definitive" possibility the couple used their son to appear unthreatening so they would be buzzed into the locked store, Platinum Ice & Jewelry on South Street near 6th, about 3 p.m. Saturday.
Police said that Benson and Stubbs asked to look at rings then created a diversion, and that Benson reached behind the counter and grabbed 15 rings, worth about $50,000.
Errant snowballs causing an uncontrollable riot and leading to mass arrests is one thing; leaving a child behind as a clever ruse in a strategic ploy at acquiring $50,000 in jewelry is priceless.
Stuff Black People Don't Like includes remembering to get their child on a jewel heist. That's it. Words can't express how crazy this story is, nor would they do anymore justice.