Career subway pickpockets may be "retiring" from the game, and most of them are content on taking their secrets to their grave if they can't find a proper apprentice. But one turncoat ex-thief, Sherman "O.T." Powell, is being kind enough to dole out advice on how not to get robbed. The Daily News paraphrases, "Stop being so clueless. Pay more attention to your surroundings. This ain't Disney World." You sure about that?
Powell, now 63 and retired after battling drug abuse, details a few moves to watch out for. He frequently hid his hands by pretending to read a newspaper, or nudge a guy in the back of the knee as he had his hand on the wallet. As the mark went down, the wallet slid out. There was also the "sandwich" move, where an accomplice would cut in front of someone waiting on line, and amidst the confusion Powell would pick the person's pocket. So those announcements on the bus are true!
Powell noted that we're in the middle of pickpocketing season, with subways and streets crowded with tourists until New Years. And if they'd just stay in their lane, maybe the pickpockets would stop bothering the rest of us.