People Discuss the Craziest Things Seen on Surveillance Cameras
Whether it's a business or a home, surveillance cameras are key in identifying unwanted situations on a property. While footage might show a frightening intruder, sometimes the cameras end up recording some seriously bizarre situations. These Redditors describe some of the craziest things they've seen on surveillance cameras. From surprising animals to property destruction, the footage is pretty unforgettable — and crazy.
This Wasn't Simba
I had a game camera out once and I had a neighbor who would just walk through my property. I didn't care; the place is pretty and there's no back fence. But I kept having sheep go missing, so I set out a camera.
Wrong Floor, Pal
I used to work overnights at a hotel and would monitor the security cameras. They would detect motion, and a little indicator would blink when motion was detected. Anyway, it always gave me the creeps when I'd hear the elevator ding. I'd run out to the lobby to greet the guest to make sure they didn't need something, and nobody would get off the elevator. I'd watch the tapes and see the motion indicator blinking on a floor, then see the elevator open on that floor. Then I’d see the elevator open on the ground floor and the motion indicator blink on the camera down the hall. It gave me the heebie-jeebies.
Stranger in the House
I was house-sitting in a huge place and set up a security camera near the bedroom. I had an uneasy feeling someone else was in the house with me, so I set up the camera just to make sure no one came near my room. In the middle of the night, someone approached the camera from behind and turned it so it faced a blank wall. Then a few minutes later they turned it back the way it was before. It tripped the security settings and I got a notification on my phone. I saw it and searched the house thoroughly the next morning but never found anything. Needless to say, I slept with my door locked the rest of my time there.
On the Loose
I worked in a maximum-security prison for a while. I was assigned to central control one night, which is where the camera screens were.
Taken for a Ride
I used to have an apartment pretty close to my office. The office building was kind of in a business district, but it was also kind of off on its own relative to the city's commercial district "footprint."
A Ghost Probably Did It
I used to work security at a college dorm, and I once witnessed one of the doors on a washing machine slowly open itself and proceed to tear itself clean off of the machine. I told my boss this creepy story and showed him the video. He made me review camera footage for the rest of the night to find out who broke the machine, despite the fact that he watched it break itself.
Survival of the Fittest
I used to manage a retail swimming pool store, and we had a nice koi pond in the side yard. I chiefly cared for it, feeding the fish and cleaning out the leaves/filter. I named all the fish and grew to care about them.
What Did the Barrier Do to Her?
I used to work as hospital security, and we had video cameras accessible in the office. Once we were eating lunch, watching the cams in the parkade. There was a barrier that went down to block the exit until you paid. Some lady in a minivan pulled up really slowly to the arm, stopped and then put the pedal to the metal. She blasted through the arm blockade, snapping it into smithereens. She then stopped on the other side for a good 30 seconds before casually driving off. Because she did it so casually, we assume it was intentional.
A Burning Issue
I worked IT for a string of retail stores. I was asked to back up the data from an incident. It was a disheveled-looking man who came into the store just before midnight. He had crazy hair. He went right to the lighter display and started selecting lighters and placing them directly to his ear. To hear the hissing of the butane? I don't know. But on the fifth lighter or so, he hit the flint. The lighter fired up, and his crazy hair burst into flames. He swatted at his hair with great speed. The flames went out, but his hair was...singed. Badly.
Cops Took Out the Real Trash
This was on my home surveillance system. There was a home invasion robbery near me, so after the cops came (and arrested the perps) I checked for surveillance footage.
Seize the Day
I help run tech support for a regional convenience store chain. About two months ago, we had a crazy occurrence of three people having seizures in our stores (three different stores) in the same day. Here's the kicker: They all happened within a range of 10 minutes. I have access to each store’s tapes and watched the first happen, and then two minutes later saw the seizure at another store. Then seven minutes later I saw it happen at a third store.
Orb to be Wild
I was installing CCTV in a retirement residence apartment and didn't have a hard drive to save the recording. I set up four cameras with the monitor in the bedroom. The other tech and I were in the bedroom looking at the screen, and we noticed a glowing orb on the living room camera going around the room and heading towards the hallway.
Nothing Like a Challenge
I work nights at a hotel, and there's this kind of odd family living on the floor above me. I watch the cameras so I can sit and chill. Fairly often in the middle of the night, an older lady who lives there comes out and runs backwards to the exit, I assume for a smoke. It’s nothing terribly abnormal for a night-owl family, I guess, but she RUNS and runs BACKWARDS every time she comes out. Really odd.
Gone to the Dogs
I have cameras up around the front of my house because we had our car broken into three times one year before the police shut down the gang doing it.
A Wild Turn of Events
I used to be the barback at a pizza place/brewery, and on most nights that included bouncing duties to kick out unruly people. The place was right by the beach so we had a lot of people who were homeless come through. One night an older man came in with a bamboo staff and was waving it around like he was going to hit someone. I had to grab the guy and take his staff and drag him outside.
A Sneaky Deal
I used to work surveillance for a casino. I’ve seen people smoke and proceed to clean their cars for an hour or more at like 4 a.m. The funniest thing I've seen is someone literally selling the stock stereo out of his truck (it wasn't stolen; he was a regular and always drove the truck).
Up Against the Wall
I work in a retail store, and for a while, I worked security there. Watching the security cameras wasn’t technically my job, but we were consistently short-staffed in that department and the manager was grooming me for promotion. So, I got to fill in and watch the cameras occasionally.
That Was a Present, Dude
I used to work IT at a university, and last Easter we had a break-in. We found the footage of the guy going in at 2 p.m., leaving at around 3 and not really taking anything. Fast forward to 7 p.m. The guy comes back in and is walking around the auditorium until 6 a.m. the next morning. In that time he proceeded to strip into his underwear, steal and wear a mask the Japanese exchange students made for the teacher and then steal six full bags of random items.
An Almost Tragic Fall
I worked at a hydropower plant in NC. The top was a walkway with a 30-foot drop off the back. A drunk group of guys is playing around on the edge. We see them on the cams, so we call the authorities. In the meantime, one of them falls.
I used to work from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. At around 3 or 4 a.m., I would start seeing things due to isolation and lack of sleep. There were many times I jumped to the cameras to see if what I was seeing was real or not. I often thought I saw people watching me and jumping off the parking garage next door.
Let the Bottle Hit the Floor
I worked as a valet back in the day at a very high-end hotel and had some friends who worked in other areas of the hotel as bartenders, servers and security. After busy Friday and Saturday nights, we all get called in like all hands on deck — every member of the staff. The hotel manager is fuming. They had set out a bottle of wine that cost something like $25,000. When they came in Sunday morning in preparation for a very important guest, the wine bottle was smashed on the floor. Everyone denied doing anything, so it just kind of went away without anyone hearing about what happened.
Making Sheep's Eyes at You
I worked in a 24/7 filling station outside of a large town in Ireland. The area is pretty rural and is really dark at night. The forecourt has a motion-activated buzzer that lets night crew inside know there's movement outside. The buzzer went off one time during my shift, so I looked outside but couldn't see anyone...
As You Wish
I worked at a hobby card shop about 12 years ago. I get to work one morning and the police are already there. We’d had a break-in and had some stuff stolen. Our IT guy gets in and pulls up the video from the night before. We see a person’s shadow walk in front of the door a few times, and then eventually the thief throws an object through the glass, smashing it. He runs in, hops the counter, throws some Yu-Gi-Oh! booster boxes into a trash bag and runs back out.
Going Out With a Bang
I was a cop in the Air Force. One night while working the operations center, I notice it looks like one of the gates to our airfield, shared with a major business and local airport, is on the ground.
Smell a Rat
It was the middle of the night and I was working alone (watching security cameras) in an African country. Suddenly, a BIG animal jumps off the roof and scuttles away into our courtyard by the front door. Terrified and about to call for backup, I pull up the recorded camera footage and replay it until I finally figure out what it was — a giant rat. I’m not sure how big those things can get, but this one looked like a medium-sized dog.
Scream Your Guts Out
The creepiest I’ve seen involved our neighbors. The lady had walked into the street at about 2 a.m. She was staring at the storm drain at the curb for about five minutes before she pulled a huge knife (it seemed like it was a foot long) out of her waistband and knelt down with her head in the drain, screaming. This went on for about 10 minutes. Then she stood there and screamed at the ground before going inside.
The Register Isn't That Way, Sir
I found a would-be burglar in the back of a department store where I worked security. After a pretty scary confrontation, the cops came and I had to pull video and write a report. He had been lurking around the back storage area for a solid 30 minutes before we closed and I found him. It scared me to see team members walking around with him lurking in the shadows, going in and out of aisles in the back. I carried mace and was a total scaredy cat for a solid year or so afterwards.
A Flurry of Papers
I worked the overnight shift as an asset protection officer for a department store distribution center. When I was hired, people joked about it being haunted, and some warned me about it.
The Old Switcheroo
Twenty-three years ago I was doing a job that involved monitoring some people through a CCTV camera on a bus. It was hidden behind the mirror the driver uses to watch passengers. Well, it was odd because a guy was standing at the front near the yellow line watching the road with the driver.
Trick or Treat
I actually do watch security cameras for a living — for a high-rise in a big city. Every Halloween, like a dozen of the folks in the company that works in there do a big group Halloween costume. One year the theme was presidents. One year it was different characters from the same TV show. So on this particular Halloween, I'm watching the cameras, not really thinking about Halloween. I glance at the elevator cameras to see an elevator door open, and a dozen women all dressed like The Grudge ghost enter the elevator at once. It spooked me for a second!