The recent Kim Kardashian robbery has been making big headlines. But it’s certainly not the first time a celebrity has been the victim of robbery – or other crimes for that matter.
The rich and famous as a target for criminals
In the aftermath of being robbed at gun point in her Paris apartment, Kardashian blames herself for the incident. Showing off her $4 million ring on social media just served as a lure to the thieves who made way with $11 million in jewelry that night.
In the age of social media, celebrities are in the spotlight like never before for the world to see. We basically know where they are, what they do and what they possess because of media. This spotlight can open celebrities up to crimes such as stalking and robbery. In the case of the “Bling Ring” robberies in 2008 and 2009, leader of the group, Rachael Lee was said to have an obsession with celebrity which “led her to want to experience first-hand the big-money lifestyle she read about in the pages of US Weekly.”
Here are five other notable celebrities who were victims of crime:
Victim of burglary and theft
From 2008 to 2009 a group of teenagers dubbed “The Bling Ring” broke into Hilton’s Beverly Hills mansion six times, stealing more than $2 million in jewelry and designer outfits. One teen even tried to dognap her pooch. Most of them served jail time as a result. About the idea of confronting the celebrity-obsessed teen thieves, the hotel heiress and socialite said, “I’m not a confrontational person. But I would literally be like, ‘You guys need serious help. And I want my stuff back.’”
Victim of identity theft
In 2002, a man named Carlos Lomax stole rapper-turned-actor Will Smith’s social security number and other information to run up nearly $33,000 in credit card bills. This all happened during Lomax’s probation for stealing the identity of Atlanta Hawks basketball player, Steve Smith, in which he ran $81,000 in credit card bills in Smith’s name. Lomax was given a two-year prison sentence for violating his probation.
Victim of domestic abuse
In 2009, pop star Rihanna was assaulted by her then-boyfriend rapper, Chris Brown. The couple found themselves in an argument over a text message from a girl that Brown was in a previous relationship with. The argument “escalated into him being violent toward me, and it was ugly”, Rihanna recounted. Brown repeatedly punched, bit and choked the singer until she was left with a bloody and swollen face.
Victim of stalking
In 2011, pop singer Selena Gomez was granted a restraining order “after a 46-year-old man with a history of mental illness and a criminal record of stalking threatened to kill her.” Thomas Brodnicki traveled from Chicago to L.A. to meet the pop star and even appeared at her workplace “at least three times.”
Victim of home invasion
“It was two in the morning”, the actor said, “I opened my eyes and there was a naked man wearing my leather jacket eating a Fudgesicle in front of my bed.” “I know it sounds funny … but it was horrifying”, he added. Cage was able to talk the man out of the house and did not press charges, as his invader had mental problems.
For celebrities, fame and fortune doesn’t necessarily equal protection from the “real world”. Often times, those very things can be the reason for their victimization.