iPad thief gets the finger: Icky pinky-mauling story is the talk of the town

You know what people everywhere love to read? Wacky crime stories. And sometimes, a wacky crime from Colorado catches the world's eye. Like the threesome from hell that shook up Niwot. Or the guy who robbed a 7-Eleven in Colorado Springs with a Klingon bat'leth. Or the sad (and kinda gross) story of Bill Jordan, whose pinky finger was mangled by a thief trying to rip a shopping bag that contained a new Apple iPad out of Jordan's hand at the Cherry Creek Shopping Center.

The story was picked up in newspapers from New Jersey and New Zealand -- as well as on countless blogs. Why? It has all the right factors: Crime? Yep. Nerdiness? Yep. Disgusting details about gaping wounds? Yep.

Of course, a good first paragraph never hurts. Here's how several different news outlets approached the story:

The Toronto Sun, which presumably picked up the story because of the Canadian connection (and who spell "favor" with a "u"):

Thieves in Denver stole a man's brand new iPad, but they also took something far more valuable: His pinky finger.

Bill Jordan didn't even want an iPad, or understand the hype surrounding the recently launched device from Apple. He was buying it as a favour for a colleague in Canada, where the iPad won't be available for another month.

The New York Daily News:

A pair of crooked thieves snatched a Colorado man's iPad -- along with his pinky.

Former New Jersey resident Bill Jordan had picked up the highly sought after Apple gadget for a co-worker when the incident occurred last week.


An iPad theft in which a victim's finger was ripped off along with his iPad add to a growing list of Apple products attracting oddball crooks and offbeat crimes. Most tech related thefts are your garden variety smash and grab attacks. Maybe a laptop goes missing from a backseat. But every so often, when Apple gear is involved, there's a twist makes the the crime remarkable.

The Associated Press, via NPR:

A thief's thirst for a brand new iPad cost a Colorado man not only a much-coveted device but also two-thirds of a pinky finger.

Doctors had to amputate part of Bill Jordan's left pinky after a man Thursday yanked away a bag containing an iPad that Jordan had just purchased at a Denver mall.

Crunch Gear:

Apple says the iPad is "magical and revolutionary," but I don't know if it's worth losing a finger over. A man in Denver purchased an iPad for a business associate -- he didn't even know what an iPad was -- and as he was exiting the mall another man came up to him and ripped the bag away, severing his finger in the process. Sigh.

More like "Ouch."

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Melanie Asmar is a staff writer for Westword. She joined the paper in 2009 and has won awards for her stories about education, immigration and epic legal battles. Got a tip? She'd love to hear it.
Contact: Melanie Asmar