Police have been mocked over a rudimentary e-fit image of a man wanted for questioning that "looks like it was made using Microsoft Paint."
The computer generated picture was circulated by Cheshire Police in the hunt for a suspect seen with a knife in a pub in Macclesfield, according to the Manchester Evening News.
But a serious appeal descended into farce as his apparently drawn-on beard prompted social media users to question how much money was left in constabulary budgets.
"There's budget cuts, and then there's using snapchat to take a picture of your mate and scribbling on his face. This is Cameron's fault," said Dominic Gibbs on Facebook.
Another commentators, Ed Coley, said: "When you're in charge of a criminal investigation but only have access to Microsoft Paint."
Some Twitter users simply expressed bewilderment and disbelief at the image.
"I genuinely thought this was a joke," said Anna Gough on Facebook. "Looks like the image was made on someone's PC using Paint."
One Twitter user gave the police a possible "lead" - by drawing a similar beard on David Cameron's face.
Others suggested a charitable collection to go towards training courses to help police improve their drawing skills.
"Is this a joke? Do we need to sort some kind of collection? I'm sure there's a course people can go on," said Tor Bullock.
The culprit being searched for entered The Park Tavern in Macclesfield on January 12 and sat alone, with AA batteries in a plastic case around his waist.
He was white, in his late 30s, with short black hair, a dark beard and a slim face.
Anyone with information is asked to call Cheshire Police on 101 and quote incident number 835.Reuse content