The best person to catch a thief is another thief because he or she knows how thieves think in Slab City. But there’s a twist here. Naked at the hot spring today she revealed all. 

‘I turned honest here three years ago because the pickings are so easy. Now I just rob thieves and people who deserve to be robbed.’ 

The practice of setting a thief to catch another is more popular than thought. The government hires a stockbroker convicted of fraudulent activities to entrap the stockbroker they were investigating for fraud. In the Slabs, where the only stock sold is in stolen articles, you may order them by cell and delivered if you know the right numbers. If they aren’t in stock, they soon are. One gentleman here arrested for hacking by the FBI went to work for them. The Imperial County, CA sheriff’s department is forever tantalizing residents they collar to snitch for them. Few do, however, there are at least eight government informants on early release from prison who have turned state evidence. 

Yet the girl at the hot spring is one step ahead of the rest. She could not be persuaded to work for the police and, instead after going straight, now steals items from camps. In a couple days she returns to the camp and offers to track and recover the goods. ‘It takes a thief to catch a thief,’ she tells them. She returns the things and is given a cash reward that she never asks for. 


‘So this isn’t illegal after all.’  


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