Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Weird Crime Wednesday: Taking a hostage doesn't mean you get to make really weird demands

(photo @ sodahead.com)

When Ignacio Gabriel Munoz woke up on the morning of May 10, 2011, he decided that it would be the first day of the rest of his life.  I know that sounds cliche, but it's not if you're going to do something that will end up with you obtaining the objects of your wildest/craziest dreams....or in jail.  Ignacio was going to take a hostage and use the leverage of innocent human life to make some pretty outrageous demands.

Sometime around noon, Ignacio headed over to the Whittier Public Library in Whittier, California (a place that he most likely spent quite a lot of time in studying philosophy and/or sleeping), got a hold of a pair of scissors, and took a school teacher hostage by holding her on his lap while pointing the blades at her neck.  


It was a situation she may have been familiar with, but only with safety scissors

Just to make sure that everyone was clear on what was happening, Ignacio began screaming that he had taken a hostage.  Along with kidnapping and assault, he had now added "excessive noise in a public library" to his list of crimes being committed that day.  There truly was no going back now.

With an innocent victim firmly in his grasp, Ignacio had the world's attention...or at least that of the immediate occupants in the library and the local police.  With all eyes on him, (including a room full of terrified students who were there with the teacher), he made his demands:

1. A pound of very potent marijuana called kush.
2. A car 
3. A Play Station 3...which had to be attached to the car
4. The Mexican Army to come pick him up at the library

"We aren't picking anyone up until this stupid 
soccer mom gets her minivan out of the drop off area!"

Anyone that has seen 'Dog Day Afternoon' knows that hostage takers never actually get what they want.  These demands are crazy enough that I have to wonder if he knew that hostage negotiators will say whatever they have to in a negotiation to keep things from going off the rails.

Maybe Ignacio was just doing a social experiment to see how much police negotiators would lie to keep him calm.  I imagine the negotiation would have gone something like this:

Police Negotiator:  Ignacio, we almost have everything you've asked for, but we need  some more time.

Ignacio:  Really?  You have "almost everything" I've asked for?

Police Negotiator:  Yes, we just need a few more hours...

Ignacio: Where did you get the drugs from?

Police Negotiator: The police evidence locker.

Ignacio: What type of car did you get?

Police Negotiator: A modified Honda Civic with chrome tail lights and after market rims.

Ignacio: I didn't even ask for that!  It's pretty racist for you to assume I'd even want that sort of vehicle...but very well done. Thank you.

Police Negotiator: We're trying our best to work with you, Ignacio.

Ignacio: And what about the Mexican Army?  Are you actually going to tell me you got them to come up here to California to give me a lift?

Police Negotiator: ...um, yeah....but they said you have to let the sergeant drive the car while you ride in the tank.

Ignacio: ...fine.  And what about the Play Station 3?

Police Negotiator:  Oh yeah, that was the easiest thing to get.

Ignacio: And did you get it installed in the car?

Police Negotiator: It's being done as we speak; that's why we need more time.

Ignacio: Where are you having the installation done?

Police Negotiator:  Best Buy.


Fortunately for the teacher and all involved, the police took another negotiation route; shooting a high powered bean bag round into Ignacio's face.

Here's what a bean bag round can do to someone's neck/shoulder area, in case you need a point of reference:

As anyone would be after taking a shot like that, Ignacio became a bit irritable.  While being taken into custody, he screamed a string of obscenities at the police while ranting about drug cartels.

Ignacio Munoz is currently still in jail awaiting trial.  He has pleaded not guilty to the crimes listed above...on the very believable grounds that he is completely insane.

                                                                                       CBS Lost Angeles: Actual Mug Shot
But still not crazy enough to get a 
custom installation done at Best Buy.