Believe it or not, Detective Ripley solves crimes with magic - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Believe it or not, Detective Ripley solves crimes with magic

A Pennsylvania detective has some unorthodox methods for getting information. (Source: WPMT via CNN) A Pennsylvania detective has some unorthodox methods for getting information. (Source: WPMT via CNN)

YORK, PA (WPMT/CNN) – A Pennsylvania detective has some unorthodox methods for cracking cases.

Sometimes, he has to reach into his bag of tricks – magic tricks, that is.

Detective George Ripley takes magic with him wherever he goes, whether it's a crime scene or an interrogation room.

"We deal with deception every day. Literally, people lie to us all the time. Basically, the majority of the job is them lying," Ripley said. "It's funny, because magic is a deceptive art by its nature. It's a performance art, but it's the art of deception."

A lot of times he'll actually use magic inside the interrogation room to loosen up the atmosphere with a victim or even a suspect.

He said he steps into the room with two items: a notepad and a deck of cards. And that's when he hopes the magic really starts working in solving a crime.

"It also lightens the mood a lot. People seem to smile, laugh," said Detective Tim Shermeyer, Ripley's partner.

The detective started doing magic as a hobby when he was 16, and just kept doing it well into his law enforcement career.

He didn't bring his tricks to work, though, until January 2016, as a way to relieve stress during a bad month of gun violence.

Now, he always has the cards on hand.

But what does Ripley take greater pleasure in: getting tips, or making people smile?

"Information is the goal. So, I say information is the most important. Smiles are bonus," Ripley said.

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