|Arthur Crimmidge Not Wearing Invisibility Cloak (right)|
Crimmidge was best known for the 1917 'Stupid-Bastard-not-wearing-an-invisible cloak incident' in which he, having received an invisible cloak, went on a thieving spree in and around the village of Bagshot, robbing shops, banks, the butcher and his Auntie Margaret's window cleaning van that she had left outside the very first Dimplex Wall Heater warehouse.
Crimmidge was actually given the invisible cloak by his mother Mrs Mavis Crimmidge, just after the Lusitania sank in 1916 of which Mr Crimmidge Snr was one of the victims. Her reasoning in getting rid of it was that the police would not have been able to have found it if they had come to her house looking for it.
Whilst her reasoning was sound it had two serious flaws. The first was that the police simply had no reason to come looking for it as nothing had been stolen by anyone wearing an invisible cloak to their knowledge and the second reason was that it was an invisible cloak so they probably wouldn't have been able to have found it anyway.
While this was all well and good there was another problem that superseded both these factors and that was that Mrs Crimmidge had been declared insane in January 1913 and there never had actually been an invisible cloak at all. Unfortunately subsequent events only exacerbated Mrs Crimmidge's delusion when Arthur Crimmidge was arrested for the aforementioned thieving spree.
Arthur Crimmidge interpretated the term 'invisible cloak' to mean a cloak that rendered the wearer invisible but in actual fact, according to his insane mother, it was the cloak that was invisible and had no effect upon the wearer and in reality it simply didn't exist. Arthur Crimmidge's thieving spree was therefore conducted in broad daylight, in front of everybody he knew, without any form of disguise. Upon asking 'what did the suspect look like?' a witness simply said to a Detective, 'it was a Stupid-Bastard-not-wearing-an-invisible cloak.'
The subsequent trial fell into chaos after the evidence of the invisible cloak was produced i.e. an invisible cloak. Ironically both the Defence and the Prosecution used exactly the same argument for their case re: The Defence argued 'you can't see it therefore Mrs Crimmidge is telling the truth.' While the Prosecution's was 'you can't see it therefore Mrs Crimmidge is lying.'
Eventually, Arthur Crimmidge was locked up for six months for petty theft while his mother got two years for breeching the infant 'Trade Description Act' for not only selling an invisible cloak that didn't make the wearer invisible but also for fraud as the cloak did not exist.