5 Things We Learned from the Bling Ring

Inside the pages of Vanity Fair‘s latest Hollywood issue is a fascinating look at the bizarre lives of Hollywood’s so-called Bling Ring, the group of Valley girls and boys who in 2009 went around burglarizing the homes of the rich and famous. You might remember sites like TMZ (which ironically is how the thieves knew their victims’ schedules) being all over this story while it developed. Back then, the accused were short on details, but now faced with the prospect of serious jail time, they’ve decided to backstab each other, like well, a bunch of Valley kids. The winners in all of this? Us! Writer Nancy Jo Sales gives juicy, first-hand accounts of the robberies of homes belonging to stars like Orlando Bloom and Paris Hilton, who seem to spend their money on exactly what you’d think Young Hollywood spends their money on: Rolexes, Louis Vuitton luggage, cocaine. For this, we can mostly thank Nick Prugo, a now remorseful ringleader of the whole operation, and a very generous tattletale. Here are five lessons learned from the saga of the Bling Ring.

Audrina Patridge has let fame get to her head. The Hills star put the media spotlight on the serial robberies when she sent an incriminating surveillance video to TMZ. And even though Patridge lost about $43,000 worth of stuff, the experience wasn’t all bad. Now Vanity Fair is writing about her, and she did not squander that opportunity to remind us how beautiful and famous she is:

“They took my great-grandma’s jewelry, my passport, my laptop, jeans made to fit my body to my perfect shape.” The estimated value of her stolen property was $43,000. Patridge said she believes the thieves were motivated by her fame. “Rachel Lee was a big fan of me. I was her target,” she said she’d heard from cops. “She’s a little obsessed girl, I gotta tell you. She’s going to get what she deserves.”

Kitson needs to change their credit card policy. Cashiers at H&M won’t even let me use my mom’s credit card, and yet somehow how Prugo and crew was able to walk into one of L.A.’s buzziest boutiques with rich people’s credit cards, “go shopping,” and “no one would question.” Sounds like “no one” should be fired.

Paris Hilton’s got great blow. After finding “about, like, five grams of coke in Paris’s house”, Nick Prugo and Rachel Lee “snorted it and left.” Then they “drove around Mulholland, having the best time of our lives.”

Leonardo Dicaprio is ageless. Apparently I’m not the only one who doesn’t want to accept that the quintessential heartthrob is five years removed from the big 4-0. Bling Ring vixen and aspiring reality TV star Alexis Neiers agrees with me:

“Nick really liked the life we had,” Alexis said. “He wanted to live like us. He wanted to tag along with us to the clubs we went to, like Apple, Guys & Dolls, Teddy’s, Ecco. It was known that we were out hanging out with Emile Hirsch and Leonardo DiCaprio—just, like, typical Young Hollywood.

Facebook is now a crime-fighting tool. While TMZ was being used to help people break into Rachel Bilson’s pad, the LAPD “used Facebook to ascertain that Lee and Prugo were “friends” with each other.” Privacy settings, people!

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