"Do you recognize this man?" Blackpool Police in England posted on Facebook. "We want to speak to him in relation to a theft at a Blackpool restaurant on the 20th September."
Reaction was swift, with people immediately noting the similarity to actor David Schwimmer, who played Ross on "Friends."
"Lay off him. He grew up with Monica. IF YOU DIDNT EAT FAST YOU DIDNT EAT," one person wrote.
"So noone told you life was gonna be this way / Your job's a joke, you're broke / Your love life's DOA / It's like you're always stuck in second gear / And before you know it you're in SPAR stealing some beeeeeeeeer," another added, in a play on the show's theme song.
"The One Where Ross Became a Thief," a third commented, referencing the series' episode titles.
The thousands of comments eventually prompted authorities to assure the public Schwimmer was not, in fact, responsible for the alleged thievery.
"Thank you to everyone for your speedy responses," police later posted. "We have investigated this matter thoroughly and have confirmed that David Schwimmer was in America on this date."
They added: "We're so sorry it has to be this way."
Schwimmer later got in on the action, posting a video of himself in New York replicating the shot of the suspect.
"Officers, I swear it wasn't me. As you can see, I was in New York. To the hardworking Blackpool Police, good luck with the investigation," he wrote.