Thieves brought down by 'lingerie'. Picture: Twitter @joenewsman
Thieves brought down by 'lingerie'. Picture: Twitter @joenewsman

Thieves brought down by ‘lingerie’

Earlier this week, teenagers Shamajai Jack and Akaila Elder strolled into a beauty store, swiped a stack of fancy perfume - and made off in a getaway vehicle.

The women managed to pinch products worth nearly $US4000 ($AU5700) and they might have got away with the daring heist if it wasn't for one huge - and hilarious - mistake.

The incident occurred inside an Ulta Beauty shop in California in the US on Tuesday morning, and Napa Police Department spokesman Todd Shulman told CBS Local the pair physically threatened terrified staff.

"They cleared out several shelves of high end perfumes," Sgt Shulman said.

"Some clerks tried to stop them, but quickly stepped back when they got worried for their own safety.

"The suspects physically confronted the employees who tried to prevent them from leaving."

The women fled the scene in a grey Honda sedan - and in a bid to avoid detection, they decided to cover up the licence plate with an item of clothing.

But they opted for a white, lacy blouse - which many witnesses mistook for "lingerie" - which ultimately made them stand out even more.

Eyewitnesses called police and described the distinctive covering, and it was later spotted on a highway by two undercover detectives, who began following the car.

TV reporter Joe Vazquez shared photos of the vehicle on Twitter.

But the vehicle noticed, and sped away - before turning down a road and attempting to "jump" over some railway tracks.

It ended up busting their tyres, and after they exited the vehicle and tried to make a break for it, they were soon captured by officers and charged with "strong armed robbery", conspiracy, evading and resisting arrest.

"The license plate was likely covered in an attempt to hide the markings from police," Sgt Shulman told CBS Local.

"Their vehicle was disabled - all four tires were flattened - because they tried to drive over the tracks.

"The suspects did not know they had turned onto a street that dead-ended into the tracks."

All of the perfume was recovered from the vehicle, and Ms Jack, 19, and Ms Elder, 18, are now behind bars while detectives are now investigating whether they were involved with other similar crimes which have occurred in the area recently.

"It's believed that these two suspects might be connected to other crimes in other jurisdictions," Sgt Shulman said.

The successful arrest was posted on the Napa Police Department's Facebook page, receiving thousands of likes, shares and comments, with many Facebook users mistaking the blouse for underwear.

"Is this the car with the panties over the license plate?" Benna Young asked.

"We thought the same thing! It ended up being a blouse," Napa Police Department replied.

But it's not the first time crooks have been undone by a random item.

Last year, US narcotics detective Kyle Willett made headlines after he was caught after swiping $54,000 from a box of evidence.

He was busted after he replaced the cash with a crumpled McDonald's takeaway bag - which contained a receipt for his $6 fast food bill.

Authorities were able to match the numbers of the credit card printed on the receipt to Mr Willett's, and found footage of his car leaving the restaurant at roughly the same time printed on the receipt.

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