They were promised a free football game, but they got handcuffs instead.
Opelika-Auburn News reports on operation Iron Snare, in which suspects wanted for delinquent child support payments were told they had won tickets to the Iron Bowl. But when they came to collect their prize, they were arrested.
One man entered looking jubilant as music blared and people all around congratulated him for being a winner.
Then he entered another room where all of the people dressed as football fans pounced and slapped handcuffs on him after he confirmed his identity.
The people who were arrested each owed at least $30,000 in unpaid child support, according to police.
Barstool Sports writes that the operation inflicted "excessive humiliation" on its targets.
The Daily What notes that this law enforcement technique was also applied in an episode of "The Simpsons," in which Homer was offered a free boat, only to discover that police wanted him to shell out for unpaid parking tickets.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that one captured suspect wasn't ready to give up hope on his prize.
"Do I still get my tickets?” he asked while being apprehended.