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Police Catch A Criminal By Luring Her With Rare Pokémon

A Virginia police department invited people with outstanding warrants to catch the very rare Pokémon, Ditto, at their station, and someone actually came in.

Last updated on August 10, 2016, at 12:12 a.m. ET

Posted on July 28, 2016, at 9:29 p.m. ET

A Virginia police department has successfully lured a criminal with a Pokémon to the station’s processing room in order to catch ‘em.

In a Facebook post last month, the Smithfield Police Department invited a few "random citizens" to catch an extremely rare Pokémon at the department's headquarters.

"The rarest Pokemon of all has been spotted in the Smithfield Police Department processing room: Ditto!" the police notice reads, referring to the legendary egg-making Poke that is believed to be uncatchable at this time.

"Since it so rare we can only allow a limited number of people in the building to capture it," the statement continued. "We put the mainframe computer in the basement to work and came up with a list of random citizens eligible for this rare opportunity. If your name is on the list below, you are one of the lucky folks invited to come to the Police Department for the capture!"

There were only 8 names on the list. People in the comments were quick to point out that to get on the list one would have to "commit a felony."

On Aug. 1, the Smithfield Police Department announced they had actually been successful in catching a criminal as a result of their Facebook post.

"Tonight the Smithfield Police Department was able to clear an active warrant due to our Ditto post. An individual came to the PD and surrendered," the Facebook post reads.

"While being processed she was asked how she knew there was an active warrant on file," the post said. "Her sister saw the PD Pokemon post and then noticed her family member was on the list. She called and told her sister, and sister came to the PD."

The Ditto post was originally shared by Sgt. Bryan Miller, a patrol sergeant and administrator of the Smithfield police Facebook page.

"To be honest I was a bit surprised to 'catch' a wanted person because of the post," Miller said to BuzzFeed News.

He added that he had thought a post related to Pokémon "would get a lot of views and maybe someone would see the post and know someone on the list."

“As for another Pokemon post used to lure the criminal element to the Police Department, I can’t give away all my secrets – time will tell,” Miller said.

Via Giphy

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.