UK police posted a photo of an alleged thief online, and the internet reacted when people remarked on the resemblance between the suspect and David Schwimmer

By Maura Hohman
October 24, 2018 12:30 PM
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Blackpool Police Facebook; Alex Lentati/ANL/REX/Shutterstock

Fans of the NBC sitcom Friends have noted a striking similarity between a a recent photo of a theft suspect posted by a British police department on Facebook and David Schwimmer, the actor best-known for his portrayal of Ross Gellar on the show.

The attention generated by the by the post compelled Schwimmer to clear his name with a humorous video he posted to Twitter.

“Do you recognise this man? We want to speak to him in relation to a theft at a Blackpool restaurant on the 20th September,” Blackpool Police wrote alongside the picture. “If you know who this is, please email 7798@lancashire.pnn.police.uk quoting log LC-20180920-0670. Thank you for your help.”

Soon after, comments poured in referencing almost every aspect of the show, which ran from 1994 to 2004. Among the subjects were its well-known theme song — “It’s not been his day, his month or even his year,” one user wrote —to esoteric one-liners.

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There were many jokes about the now 51-year-old actor’s character of Ross, a cerebral paleontologist, including that he was “on a break” — a nod to Ross’ on-again, off-again relationship with Rachel Green, played by Jennifer Aniston.

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Police from the Scottish city of Dumfries jumped in on the fun,calling back to one episode where Ross claims to be an expert in self-defense. Sharing the Blackpool post, they wrote, “And if you see him keep away, he is known to have studied Karate and we believe he has mastered the art of Unagi, the state of total awareness.”

On Wednesday morning, Schwimmer posed a video of himself moving swiftly through a convenience store with cans, which resembled the suspect photo circulated by police.

“Officers, I swear it wasn’t me. As you can see, I was in New York,” he wrote. “To the hardworking Blackpool Police, good luck with the investigation. #itwasntme”

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The cast of Friends
Reisig & Taylor/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank?Getty

The previous day, Blackpool police announced the alleged thief was not Schwimmer, saying he was in the United States at the time.

“Thank you to everyone for your speedy responses. We have investigated this matter thoroughly and have confirmed that David Schwimmer was in America on this date,” They wrote. “We’re so sorry it has to be this way.”

It was not immediately clear whether anyone has been arrested in connection with the case.

Reps for Schwimmer didn’t not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.