A former professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has found himself in court after he robbed a Manhattan bank in the service of “art”.
Joseph Gibbons, 61, a filmmaker and artist was charged on Friday with robbery after he allegedly stole $1,000 from a bank in Chinatown.
He has been boasting about his crime to fellow inmates as he wait for his arraignment the New York Post reports.
His cell-mate Kaylan Sherrard, 27, said: “He was doing research for a film”.
He added: “It’s not a crime; it’s artwork.”
Mr Gibbons told art journal Big, Red & Shiny: “The romantic idea of the artist getting involved in these kinds of activities as a kind of research, gaining experience. But that was the big inspiration on [sic] me.
Mr Gibbons walked into the Manhattan bank on New Year’s Eve at about 2pm, with a camcorder. He asked the teller for a donation to his church, court documents state.
He now faces felony charges in two states.
Rhode Island police had also been after Mr Gibbons who committed a similar act in November and stole $3,000 in cash.
Judge Abraham Clott set bail at $50,000 after Mr Gibbons’ lawyer confirmed he was mentally sound.
Mr Gibbons previously opined at his lack of problems to base his art on and hence his need to create them.
He said: “I just worried if I had enough problems within me that I could exploit. So when I ran [out] of my own—I started creating them—I made one or two films based on drug addiction.”
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