Category: 2019 News

Man accused of stealing $4,599 engagement ring, then selling it at a pawn shop

By Adam Rogan

November 21, 2019

RACINE — A Kenosha man allegedly stole more than $6,200 worth of jewelry, including a single ring worth nearly $4,600, then reportedly sold the ring at a secondhand retail store in Kenosha.

The man — Tyrone Evans, 46, of the 5900 block of 10th Avenue in Kenosha — allegedly took a ring set valued at $6,252.69 (including an engagement ring valued at $4,599) from a Racine home in August 2018. He then sold the ring to a Kenosha pawn shop, according to police.

Evans is also under investigation by the Kenosha Police Department for suspected theft of copper, according to his criminal complaint.

The Racine Police Department reported that the missing ring was recovered after searching Evans’ sales history on LeadsOnline, a database of stolen items that many pawn shops are required to use to help law enforcement recover stolen items.

Evans has been charged with felony theft of movable property. He also has multiple prior convictions related to theft, including burglary and criminal damage to property in 2018 in Kenosha County, burglary in 2010 in Milwaukee County and four counts of burglary in 2006 in Milwaukee County.

A warrant was authorized for Evans’ arrest on March 29 and he first appeared in Racine County court on Wednesday. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Jan. 15. He remained in custody at the Racine County Jail as of Thursday.

Source: https://journaltimes.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/man-accused-of-stealing-engagement-ring-then-selling-it-at/article_8b5387bc-0a6d-52f3-8a26-1c0a8acf6c58.html

SCSO: About half of stolen construction items claimed

By Jake Wasikowski

November 21, 2019

SARPY COUNTY NEB. (KMTV) — — Sarpy and Douglas County authorities are returning stolen construction items to their owners.

Contractors and builders went to the Sarpy County Sheriff’s Office to claim their tools or building supplies.

Deputies arrested Brett Nelson, 38, for 8 counts of felony burglary. His bond was set at $50,000 – 10%.

He’s accused of breaking into homes under construction in Southwest Omaha and taking tools, home fixtures, and other items.

The arrest affidavit says since the end of September he went to metro pawn shops 28 times to sell the stolen goods.

“They’re hard working people and they make an honest living and it’s very unfortunate for them to have their items stolen so it’s good to see them get their stuff back,” said Inv. Karen Craig with the Sarpy County Sheriff’s Office.

Investigators used “Leads Online,” a tool that quickly identifies sellers and what they’ve sold to different stores.

If you had any tools or home fixtures stolen from a build site in Southwest Omaha contact Sarpy County at 402-593-2304.

Source: https://www.3newsnow.com/news/local-news/scso-about-half-of-stolen-construction-items-claimed


Omaha City Council extends contract for police, pawnshops to use stolen-goods database

November 5, 2019

By Aaron Sanderford

The Omaha City Council on Tuesday extended by five years the city contract for the database that the Omaha Police Department uses to identify and return stolen property sold to local pawnshops and secondhand stores.

The new, roughly $56,500-a-year deal with Texas-based LeadsOnline means that police and local retailers covered under city ordinance will continue to use the service through 2024.

Police say the system has helped them return more than $1.2 million in stolen property in the three-plus years since the city passed an ordinance requiring stores to log fingerprints, photos and IDs from people selling used items.

Among the items identified and returned: jewelry, electronics, snowblowers, bicycles and sporting goods.

Police sought the extension because they say the software lets them check images and information on items sold to pawnshops and secondhand shops against police reports filed. Investigators then follow up on leads.

Through the end of September, the system helped officers identify and return 1,305 stolen items, according to police. The average value of each of those stolen items: $923, though individual values varied widely.

The sponsor of the ordinance, Councilman Pete Festersen, has said it helps to have criminals know it’s harder to get rid of stolen items in Omaha.

No retailers spoke in opposition to the extension Tuesday.

Source: https://www.omaha.com/news/omaha-city-council-extends-contract-for-police-pawnshops-to-use/article_b85f4c5a-692e-5645-ac25-dd7feef6df6b.html

Goddard PD Suggests Online Service to Track Valuables

November 3, 2019

By Jacob Weston

You may want to think about using an online service to make a record of valuables in case you are the victim of theft.

The Goddard Police Department suggests using the ReportIt service, which is free and part of LeadsOnline. This database is used by police across the country to help track and recover stolen property.

“The addition of the free service ReportIt will provide a safe and secure tool for our citizens to inventory and log their valuables. In the event of a theft or disaster, a report can be generated by the owner that will provide a comprehensive list of their items and serial numbers, greatly increasing the chances of recovery.” explains Chief Fred Farris.

LeadsOnline is also used to record items sold at pawn shops, so if a serial number or description matches a stolen item you have a better chance of getting your property back.

You can look into the ReportIt service through the link below.

ReportIt Property Inventory System

Source: https://www.kfdi.com/2019/11/03/goddard-pd-suggests-online-service-to-track-valuables/

Omaha police returned $1.2M in stolen goods since property-crime law took effect in 2016

October 29, 201

By Chinh Doan

Omaha police say they have recovered $1.2 million in stolen property through an online registration program, but some businesses have privacy concerns.

OMAHA, Neb. — “There are many people who have had jewelry stolen,” said Sgt. Tina Jennum with the Omaha Police Department’s pawn/salvage squad. “Sometimes, we’re able to find that property, and I know they are really grateful because it was their grandmother or grandfather who gave them a watch or a ring, and they’re really happy to get it back. It doesn’t matter the value of it. They just want it back for sentimental reasons.

That’s more than 1,300 items recovered since 2016, when the city started requiring pawn shops and salvage dealers to use a nationwide registration system called LeadsOnline. Second hand shops were also required starting in 2019.

Jennum shared this breakdown at Tuesday’s City Council public hearing:

2016: over 430 items held, valued at $336,000
2017: 293 items held, valued at $330,000
2018: 358 items held, valued at nearly $400,000
2019 (through Sept.): 224 items held, valued at $137,000

The ordinance requires businesses to log sellers’ fingerprints, photos and IDs and hold the items for 14 days before paying the seller.

At the Nov. 5 City Council meeting, members will vote on a five-year contract to continue with LeadsOnline for about $56,000 a year.

Councilman Pete Festersen sponsored the ordinance and told KETV NewsWatch 7 the program is worth it.

“Until now, we haven’t really had that mechanism, so we’re very pleased with the results, and we think it’s deterring burglary and theft throughout the city,” said Festersen.

Sol’s Jewelry and Loan is among the hundreds of Omaha businesses using LeadsOnline, as required by the ordinance.

General manager, John Dineen, told KETV NewsWatch 7 the program saves time for staff and law enforcement.

“Instead of having an officer come out, pick up hard copies and spending those resources, now it’s a straight download,” said Dineen. “The police have them right in their cruisers.”

A few businesses told KETV NewsWatch 7 LeadsOnline hurts their business.

Tom white, who represented two salvage yards, sued the city over privacy concerns. His clients still comply to the ordinance by electronically sending the required information to police directly rather than uploading on LeadsOnline.

“If they, LeadsOnline, had a breach in their security, and that information was taken, they had no liability, leaving you as the business on the hook for the damage done to your own customer,” said White.

Dineen and other supporters of LeadsOnline say the program has been around for years and have not had any security concerns.

Source: https://www.ketv.com/article/omaha-police-have-returned-1-2-million-in-stolen-goods-since-property-crime-law-took-effect-in-2016/29630165

Arrest made in jewelry store robbery

October 18, 2019

By C.P. Thompson

A Hurley man has been accused of stealing thousands of dollars’ worth of jewelry from Allen’s Silver City Jewelers and pepper-spraying a clerk last week. Cruz Placencio, 24, was arrested Tuesday and has been charged with five criminal counts.

According to an affidavit for arrest, Placencio allegedly visited Silver City Jewelers twice — once with his girlfriend — on Oct. 8, the day before the robbery. During the visits, he asked to see a catalog and for a showcase to be opened.

The next day, Oct. 9, around 11:54 a.m., Placencio allegedly entered the store wearing a gray sweater, gray sweatpants and black-and-white Adidas shoes, the affidavit states. He pointed a handgun at the clerk and demanded money, while covering his face with his shirt. The clerk gave Placencio the register tray, and he took a $20 bill.

He ordered the clerk to open the showcases, and placed the merchandise — including watches, necklaces and rings — on the counter. Placencio put the merchandise inside a backpack, and also put watches inside his pockets. The report alleges that he then pepper-sprayed the clerk and took off, dropping some watches while leaving the store.

Silver City Police Detective Salvador Quintana told the Daily Press that Placencio was in the store for about two minutes and 45 seconds, during which time he allegedly stole around $60,000 worth of jewelry. Silver City Police Chief Fred Portillo previously told the Daily Press that the clerk received medical attention on the scene, but her injuries were non-life-threatening, and the robber headed west on Market Street after leaving the store.

The clerk said she knew “the guy was trying to disguise his voice, but once the male subject started talking, Cruz Placencio was the first person” who came to mind, police said. The robber and Placencio share the same build, as well.

The affidavit states that a man saw Placencio get into a red two-door pickup on the corner of Arizona and Kelly streets. Surveillance video from Silver City Jewelers shows that Placencio drove an identical vehicle to the front of the store during his visit Oct. 8, the day before the robbery.

An off-duty police officer saw Placencio driving the same vehicle Oct. 14, and tried following it to “have an officer make contact, but lost the truck during the incident,” according to the affidavit. The officer ran the license plate, and determined that the vehicle belonged to Placencio’s mother.

On Oct. 15, around 8:53 a.m., a police officer saw Placencio enter a business on Pope Street and contacted Quintana. Quintana asked Central Dispatch if Placencio still had a valid warrant, which stemmed from a battery charge. Placencio then came out of the business and got into a vehicle — but not the one from the robbery. Quintana told Placencio about the warrant, and later arrested him.

A police officer conducted a “search incident” on Placencio and found a wristwatch taken from Silver City Jewelers, the affidavit states. Quintana wrote that he saw a dark-colored sweater and black-and-white Adidas shoes through the vehicle’s window.

Placencio told Quintana that he has “belongings” in a Hurley home. After obtaining a search warrant, Quintana found a tag from Silver City Jewelers, rings and a receipt from DK Gun and Pawn. Quintana learned from a clerk at DK Gun and Pawn that Placencio got a gun from the store on Oct. 5. Quintana also found .40-caliber bullets in the vehicle.

The affidavit states that a search warrant was approved for the Hurley home, which Quintana and another detective searched Oct. 15. During the search, a crystal-like substance and more .40-caliber bullets were found.

On Oct. 16, Quintana found the truck that was used from the robbery at Placencio’s girlfriend’s home in Silver City. After getting a search warrant, Quintana found a plastic bag that had “a rose gold diamond ring with a white tag with” numbers. The numbers matched the Silver City Jewelers inventory sheet.

Quintana talked to a Las Cruces Police Department detective, who told Quintana about LeadsOnline, a pawn shop information program. While searching the program, he found that Placencio’s girlfriend had pawned two rings at a pawn shop in Las Cruces.

The affidavit states that the girlfriend admitted to pawning the two rings. Placencio told his girlfriend that they “were his mother’s rings, and that he wanted her to pawn them for him due to his appearance.” The girlfriend said “she didn’t think anything of it, due to his mother having a lot of rings.”

Quintana showed the girlfriend pictures from Silver City Jewelers, and she said that the two rings were given to her before coming to the store.

Placencio has been charged with armed robbery, larceny, aggravated assault, possession of a controlled substance and battery.

Detectives said they are working with Las Cruces and El Paso police to recover what was stolen.

Around an hour before the robbery, a man called Central Dispatch from a telephone number with a 505 area code, and said “he is going to shoot up Silver High” before hanging up. Silver High School and neighboring schools were placed on lockdown. After the schools were declared safe, they were removed from lockdown around noon.

A detective is still working on the lockdown and attempting to trace the number. There hasn’t been anything “concrete” that leads police to assume that the robbery and threat are connected. The robbery incident is still active and anyone who has information about it should visit the Silver City Police Department or call them at 538-3723.

Placencio was booked into the Grant County Detention Center on Oct. 15, and remained at the detention center Thursday night.

Source: http://scdailypress.com/site/2019/10/18/arrest-made-in-jewelry-store-robbery/

SPD encourages citizens to register valuables online

October 16, 2019

By KTAL/KMSS Staff

SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) — Shreveport police are encouraging citizens to register their valuables online, saying that it could make the difference in recovering your property if ever reported stolen.

The Shreveport Police Department shared the advice on Facebook Wednesday evening, adding that serial numbers, photos, and receipts are all vital to the investigation of missing property.

In the post, they suggest registering property online with ReportIt. SPD says the information you enter is completely secure and you can access the web page from any computer with an internet connection using your username and password.

Source: https://www.arklatexhomepage.com/top-stories/spd-encourages-citizens-to-register-valuables-online/

Woman charged in storage unit theft ring

September 26, 2019

A 30-year-old woman has been charged with working with four group of people who broke into storage units in Waco and across McLennan County with items then being pawned or sold.

Isabel Denise Gonzalez was already in the McLennan County Jail on numerous credit card abuse charges out of Lacy Lakeview when the new charges of engaging in organized criminal activity were served on her by investigators with the McLennan County Sheriff’s Office.

An arrest affidavit stated that she was accused of working others in entering storage units that had the locks cut off and other locks put in their place.

Deputies had been working a storage unit burglary case in West when other county cases were discovered and it was learned that the Waco Police Department were working several more.

Waco police ran a search warrant with the assistance of deputies where items such as a leather riding saddle, golf clubs, all sorts of tools and other items that matched sheriff’s office cases were recovered.

During the investigation Gonzalez was seen with others taking items from storage units and placing them in a unit held by one of the co-conspirators.

Investigators ran pawn lists for Gonzalez and others in the suspect group and were able to locate stolen property.

The arrest affidavit stated that one of the others questioned in the cases said it was Gonzalez who would locate the storage units and coordinated what items were being sold and pawned at the different pawnshops.

The affidavit quoted one of those questioned as saying Gonzalez would pop the locks of the storage units and leave other locks in their place.

Thursday Gonzalez remained in the McLennan County Jail on the county charges of engaging in organized crime, a Waco PD charge of theft of property, a Waco PD charge of engaging in organized criminal activity and had previous bonds revoked for an earlier charge of possession of methamphetamine and nine cases of credit or debit card abuse out of Lacy Lakeview.

Source: https://www.fox44news.com/news/local-news/local/woman-charged-in-storage-unit-theft-ring/

Police to Work With NY Pawn Shops to Track Stolen Goods

September 25, 2019

Police to Work With NY Pawn Shops to Track Stolen Goods
A new law in Westchester County will have police able to check a database that tracks diamonds, gems, gold and silver sold to local pawn shops. Cops may be able to even find the person who sold the goods. NBC New York’s Ken Buffa reports.

Watch the video: https://www.nbcnewyork.com/on-air/as-seen-on/Police-to-Work-With-NY-Pawn-Shops-to-Track-Stolen-Goods_New-York-561374612.html

Carson City arrests: Man allegedly steals and pawns laptop, games from friend’s game room

September 25, 2019

A man was arrested Tuesday for suspicion of felony grand larceny, obtaining money under false pretenses and misdemeanor violation of a suspended sentence after allegedly breaking into a game room of a residence, stealing electronics and selling them, a Carson City sheriff’s deputy report said.

Ruben Michael Omohundro, listed as a transient, was taken into custody at 9:36 p.m. According to the arrest report, deputies were called to an East Nye Lane residence for a burglary report. A deputy met with the victim who stated someone entered into the home’s game room and took an Apple MacBook Air and marijuana that was recently purchased from a local marijuana dispensary.

While the victim began looking for the laptop, they noticed the rear window was not locked and cracked open, and footprints leading to the game room. The victim provided a written statement and the deputy took photos of the footprints outside the window, the report states.

The deputy then checked on a website to see if the MacBook was pawned. The deputy discovered that it was pawned at a local pawn shop with a sale amount of $125, and the suspect’s name. The officer contacted the victim and asked if they knew the suspect.

The victim told the officer the suspect was at the residence hanging out in the game room and that a Nintendo Switch had also been discovered stolen and that they wished to have it added to the report.

A deputy met with the suspect and asked if he would speak. He was read his Miranda rights and asked if he wished to speak. He said he understood his rights and agreed to talk, the report states.

He was asked what he was doing with the laptop. At first the man said he didn’t know. The officer then asked if he recently went to a pawnshop and pawned the laptop. He admitted he did and received $125, the report states. He was arrested.

The man asked if he could speak with the victims before he left. The victims asked where a Playstation 4 was (which was reported on in a prior case) and the Nintendo Switch. The man hesitated and admitted that the Playstation 4 was pawned at a Douglas County business and the Nintendo Switch pawned at a Carson City business, the arrest report states.

The deputy asked how much he received for the Playstation 4 and the Switch. He said he received $120 for the Playstation 4 and $140 for the Nintendo Switch. The suspect provided a written statement stating where he pawned the Playstation and Nintendo, the report states.

Based on the report showing the man received $125 for selling the MacBook, he was charged with grand larceny and obtaining money under false pretenses. The investigation will continue Wednesday with the deputy report stating he will review pawn receipts and recover the stolen property. Total bail amount listed in the arrest report $46,000.

In other arrests
— A 38-year-old Carson City man was arrested Tuesday, 10:48 p.m. in the 2300 block of Bunch Way for suspicion of misdemeanor domestic battery and obstructing an officer.

According to the arrest report, deputies were dispatched to a residence in reference to a domestic battery. Dispatch learned the male half was extremely verbal and in a heated state of mind. The reporting party said the man would be uncooperative with deputies when they arrived as he has a history of obstructing.

Officers learned in the investigation that the man had been drinking, became belligerent, grabbed the victim by the feet and threw them off a bed, then shoved the victim with both hands, causing a fall. The victim stated the man attempted to grab their cell phone and that he was pushed away.

A deputy and canine arrived and asked for other deputies to expedite. Deputies gave the suspect commands to put his hands behind his back. The man refused several times. Deputies took hold of him, placed him in handcuffs and he had to be physically carried to a patrol car where he then refused to get in. An OC spray was deployed. The man then complied with orders and the OC was wiped from his face. He was booked for suspicion of domestic battery and obstructing an officer. Bail: $3,774.

All information for the crime log (unless otherwise noted) comes from the arrest reports supplied by the Carson City Sheriff’s Office, and is considered by law to be public information. All subjects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. The policy of Carson Now is to name anyone who is arrested for a felony offense.

Source: https://carsonnow.org/story/09/25/2019/carson-city-arrests-man-allegedly-steals-and-pawns-laptop-games-friends-game-room

Man accused of stealing, pawning A-State computers

August 9, 2019

JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) – A Jonesboro man faces felony charges after police say he stole several computers from Arkansas State University and then pawned them.

Craighead County District Judge David Boling found probable cause Thursday to charge Joseph Alexander Cummings, 22, with commercial burglary and theft of $1,000 or more but less than $5,000. Both are Class D felonies.

Cummings is accused of stealing five Apple computers, valued at $7,766.43, from the A-State Fine Arts Department last month.

On Aug. 6, according to court documents, Sgt. Brian Shelton with the University Police Department was notified by Leads on Line that Cummings had sold three of the stolen computers to Express Pawn, 3205 E. Nettleton.

The A-State employee who reported the theft told Shelton she was “familiar with the suspect and has seen him in and out of her building,” the affidavit stated.

“But there is no reason for him to have possession of these items outside of the university and he definitely did not have permission to sell them,” the court documents said.

After reviewing the case, Judge Boling found probable cause to charge Cummings and initially set his bond at $7,500. But Cummings asked that the amount be lowered, stating a family member did not have that much money.

The judge reduced his bond to $6,500 and told him to appear in circuit court on Sept. 27.

Source: https://www.kait8.com/2019/08/09/man-accused-stealing-pawning-a-state-computers/

An Amazon driver theft ring sold stolen goods for 6 years, raked in millions in sales

August 1, 2019

By Gene Johnson

SEATTLE – A theft ring in Washington state sold millions of dollars’ worth of stolen goods on Amazon.com in the past six years, and a pair of Amazon delivery drivers was involved, recently unsealed federal court documents show.

According to a search warrant affidavit unsealed in U.S. District Court in Seattle and reviewed by The Associated Press, two storefront businesses posing as pawnshops bought the goods from shoplifters, then had the items shipped to Amazon warehouses, where they were stored until sold online.

Entities associated with the alleged ringleader did at least $10 million in sales on Amazon since 2013, FBI agent Ariana Kroshinsky wrote in her affidavit.

No charges have yet been filed, though investigators have raided the pawnshops and the home of the man identified as the ringleader, Aleksandr Pavlovskiy, 44, of Auburn. A man who answered the door at one of the shops Wednesday identified himself as Alex and told The Associated Press his business was legitimate, that he kept good records and he should not be in any trouble.

How they did it

Among those who provided stolen items to the pawnshops were two contract Amazon drivers, Kroshinsky said. Their job was to travel to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, pick up items being returned to the company and then bring them to an Amazon warehouse south of Seattle, and to deliver items to post offices for shipping. Instead, they routinely stole the goods and sold them to the pawnshops, she wrote.

Amazon did not immediately return an email seeking comment about the case Thursday.

The investigation began last summer when a police detective in Auburn, a south Seattle suburb, was perusing a record of pawnshop sales and noticed that one man had made 57 transactions. It turned out to be one of the drivers.

He had received nearly $30,000 selling items to the pawnshops between February and July last year, the affidavit said. Police initially arrested the driver but released him from jail to avoid disrupting their larger investigation.

The other driver, identified as Abbas Zghair, was believed to be a roommate of the first. Amazon told investigators that Zghair stole about $100,000 worth of property, including gaming systems, sporting goods and computer products – items he sold to one of the pawnshops for less than $20,000, the agent wrote.

In an unrelated case, Zghair has been charged with murder after police said he shot and killed a man in an Auburn field in March, then fled to the Canadian border, where he was arrested trying to cross with a fake ID. He’s being held on $2.5 million bail.

Detectives staked out the pawnshops, Innovation Best in Kent, Washington, and Thrift-Electro in Renton, Washington, and observed that they appeared to be paying shoplifters and drug users cash for new items from Home Depot, Lowes and Fred Meyer department stores. Unlike typical pawnshops, they didn’t make sales; instead, the products were moved to a warehouse and to Amazon “fulfillment centers,” from where they were shipped when they were sold on Amazon’s website by sellers using the handles “Bestforyouall” or “Freeshipforyou,” the affidavit said.

According to a database of pawnshop transactions reviewed by Auburn police, the suspect pawnshops paid more than $4.1 million to sellers who brought them nearly 48,000 items in the past six years. The items included allergy medication, razors, electric toothbrushes and tools in their original packaging. Detectives also conducted undercover operations in which they sold new items in their original packaging to the shops, which accepted them no questions asked, Kroshinsky wrote.

The FBI said it is awaiting more Amazon records to determine the full extent of Pavlovskiy’s enterprise, but that “estimated revenue from Amazon sales, for entities associated with Aleksandr Pavlovskiy, was at least $10 million since 2013.”

Pavlovskiy’s lawyer, Cristine Beckwith, did not return a message seeking comment.

Not an isolated incident

The sale of stolen or counterfeit goods on Amazon or other digital marketplaces is not uncommon, but it was not immediately clear how many other schemes had reached such a volume of sales. Last year, police raided a pawnshop in Monroe, north of Seattle, that they said had taken in $428,000 fencing stolen items, much of it on Amazon.

Jon Reily, a vice president for the digital consultancy firm Publicis Sapient and previously the head of e-commerce user experience for Amazon Devices, said preventing the sale of stolen goods is a major challenge for the company, but retailers can be held liable if they don’t do enough to ensure they’re not selling stolen goods. Because it’s impossible for Amazon to review “every Tide pod” that’s sold on its site, the company will likely need to do more to vet sellers, Riley said.

“It’s a little bit of an arms race for Amazon to be able to take in product, put it on the web and get it to their customers in a speedy fashion and not unwittingly sell stolen stuff at the same time,” Reily said. “Ultimately what Amazon has to do is show good faith if the government comes knocking on the door and says, ‘Look, you’re selling stolen goods.'”

Source: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2019/08/01/amazon-delivery-driver-theft-ring-washington-identified-fbi/1894681001/

Man accused of stealing copper wire from telephone poles at least 15 times in three months

July 26th 2019

By Quixem Ramirez

SAN ANTONIO — A San Antonio man is facing charges for allegedly stealing copper wire from telephone poles at least 15 times in the past three months according to an arrest affidavit.

Ray Puente, 36, is accused of stealing copper wire on at least 15 occasions. Police said there were over 20 cases involving copper wire being cut from telephone poles throughout the San Antonio area in the past past three months. A majority of the thefts happened on the Southwest Side.

A contractor replacing cut copper lines May 20 at 4707 Wurzbach Road found a black backpack at the site according to the affidavit. Detectives said a machete, hack-saw, plies used to cut wire and a paperwork containing Puente’s information from the Bexar County Probation Office were found inside the backpack.

Investigators found proof of Puente selling copper wire at two different times the day after the theft at Danny’s San Antonio Recycling on Somerset Road. The weight of the copper wire totaled 277 pounds, a mark consistent with the weight of the copper wire reportedly stolen the day before. LeadsOnline, the nation’s largest investigative system, showed Puente selling copper wire over 15 different times in the past three months.

Puente faces a charge for theft of aluminium.

Source: https://foxsanantonio.com/news/local/man-accused-of-stealing-copper-wire-from-telephone-poles-at-least-15-times-in-three-months

Police: Pawn shop owners reaped $1 million-plus in retail crime enterprise

By Lisa Redmond

July 18, 2019

MANCHESTER — The owners of pawn shops in Manchester and Concord are accused of being the ringleaders of organized retail crime rings that prosecutors said reaped more than $1 million in profits by selling stolen items on eBay.

“It is the most expansive retail organized crime enterprise I’ve ever seen,” prosecutor Patrick Ives told Hillsborough County Superior Court Judge Amy Messer on Thursday.

Ives said Kyle Perkins, 27, and his domestic partner, Shaira Clarissa, 34, both of Concord, used their pawnshops to solicit stolen merchandise and then sell items on eBay with an account created in their child’s name.

Merrimack County officials may bring additional charges after a raid on the couple’s Concord home allegedly yielded more than an ounce of methamphetamine and evidence of a scheme to make counterfeit money, identifications and credit cards, Ives said.

After a lengthy joint investigation by Manchester and Concord police, on Wednesday police raided the couple’s businesses, EZ Pawn and Apple Operation on South Willow Street in Manchester and EZ Apple Repair on Main Street in Concord, along with their Concord home.

In raiding the home, Ives said investigators found “money scattered everywhere.’’

Thousands of dollars worth of what are believed to be stolen goods were seized, police said. More than 450 items — from tools and electronics to home goods, some still in the boxes — were seized as evidence, Ives said.

Perkins and Clarissa are charged with three counts each of receiving stolen property. Co-defendant Christopher Hill, 31, pleaded not guilty to four counts of receiving stolen property.

Messer released Hill on $2,500 cash bail with the conditions that he live at home and continue with a drug diversion program. Clarissa was ordered held pending the assignment of a defense attorney.

Perkins was ordered held without bail after Ives argued Perkins has a similar conviction in a 2015 Merrimack County case. In that case Perkins, the owner of a now-defunct pawnshop in Goffstown, was accused of running a fencing operation involving stolen computer equipment, according to published reports.

“The evidence filled the Goffstown Police Department’s evidence locker,” Ives said. Perkins received a two- to five-year suspended sentence, which the Attorney General’s office will ask a judge to impose in light of the new charges, Ives said.

Defense attorney Joseph Fricano argued for Perkins to be released, saying there is no evidence that traces the sales of stolen items to him.

“He ran a pawnshop,” Fricano said. “He can’t control what comes and goes in his store.” Fricano suggested that Manchester police did their research into stolen items using LeadsOnline.com, a subscription service that tracks pawnshop receivables. Police use the system to compare pawned items with those that have been reported stolen.

“If Mr. Perkins was running some elaborate scheme he was not doing a very good job of hiding it, since most of the merchandise was entered into the Leads system,” Fricano said.

As for the 10 or so people who were allegedly stealing items and selling them to Perkins, Fricano said “all these corroborating witnesses have motives to lie and fabricate.”

Source: https://www.unionleader.com/news/crime/police-pawn-shop-owners-reaped-million-plus-in-retail-crime/article_a637e502-2317-52e9-a89b-84eef1b498de.html

Man steals hundred of thousands of dollars worth of coins from girlfriend’s grandmother, police say

By Jacque Masse

April 16, 2019

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Memphis police arrested a man after they said he stole a coin collection from his girlfriend’s grandmother.

According to the arrest affidavit, the victim called the police when she noticed coins were missing from her safe.

A family member broke down in tears when FOX13 asked her about those coins. She said her father spent years saving them for his wife.

“Let’s just put it this way. It was my dad’s life savings and what my mother was supposed to live on,” she said.

The victim told police she believed her granddaughter’s boyfriend, Brandon Raley, might have found the key. Detectives searched the Lead Online pawn database and found where 156 of the coins had been pawned by Raley.

Police found the suspect at his home and he told police that he had a homeless friend named “Erin” who he brought to the house. He left “Erin” inside the house for a bit alone, and then he met him at the car.

Sometime later, he said “Erin” asked for help to pawn off coins that his grandfather had left him. He claimed his friend did not have an ID and needed help to pawn the items.

When detectives asked about inconsistencies in his story, he became defensive and said he no longer wished to speak.

Police records said he did willfully admit to pawning the gold Kruggerands.

Raley was arrested and charged with Theft of Property more than $25,000.

Source: https://www.fox13memphis.com/top-stories/man-steals-hundred-of-thousands-of-dollars-worth-of-coins-from-girlfriend-s-grandmother-police-say/940626599

Woman says life savings gone after expensive coins are stolen

By Stacy Jacobson

April 16, 2019

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Bartlett man, 22, stole nearly $500,000 from his girlfriend’s grandmother over the course of four months, according to Shelby County deputies.

Lou Goodwin, 82, now relives every moment of the last year, as she remodeled her home, mourned her late husband and welcomed her granddaughter’s boyfriend Brandon Raley in to her family’s life.

“He sat right behind me at the funeral,” she said of the service for her late husband last July. “He started to go to church with us. Sat right behind me at church. I gave him a bible at Christmas.”

She says she’d heard Raley had a drug problem, but she looked out for him because she also knew he had a tough upbringing. So she welcomed him into her home and he offered to help with renovations.

“He’d be painting and have to go in the garage to get the paint,” Goodwin said.

That’s how she said Raley figured out how to steal her life savings over a period of time between December and April.

Goodwin had always used a combination lock to access the safe. She said her late husband never told her about a key, but Raley somehow found one and took cash and valuable coins , including gold Krugerrands worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.

“I don’t know how many Krugerrands my husband had bought over the years. They were all gone, 200 of them,” she said. “It would be somewhere around $500,000.”

Goodwin says she went to get money to pay her taxes Monday and that’s when she realized the safe was empty. She called the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, and they used a website to find records of Raley taking the gold to pawn shops..

WREG went to the suspect’s Bartlett home and a woman identifying herself as his sister answered the door. We asked her about her brother and whether he’d do this. She did not want to comment.

Raley told deputies a homeless friend asked him to sell the gold because the friend didn’t have identification.

Goodwin called that an excuse.

“He spent Christmas with us. I never dreamed he’d do that to me. But I don’t think you can trust anyone,” she said.

She had no idea how she’d pay her taxes now, but somehow, God will take care of her.

Source: https://wreg.com/2019/04/16/woman-says-life-savings-gone-after-expensive-coins-are-stolen/

Royal man arrested after crime spree

By Steven Mross

April 3, 2019

A Royal man was arrested early Tuesday on multiple felony charges stemming from an alleged three-month crime spree that included numerous break-ins and a high-speed pursuit during which he rammed his vehicle through a building.

Michael Allen Lynch, 27, who lists a Ragweed Valley Road address, was taken into custody around 3:30 a.m. and charged with possession of meth with purpose to deliver, punishable by up to 20 years in prison, first-degree criminal mischief and theft of property over $5,000, punishable by up to 10 years, and breaking or entering, second-degree criminal mischief, felony fleeing, and possession of drug paraphernalia, each punishable by up to six years.

Lynch was also charged with misdemeanor counts of resisting arrest, criminal mischief, failure to appear and unlawful transfer of stolen property to a pawnshop, punishable by up to one year in jail.

Lynch was being held on bonds totaling $57,250 and is set to appear today in Garland County District Court.

According to a probable cause affidavit on some of the charges, on Jan. 7, a break-in to a storage facility at Trader Bill’s, 1530 Albert Pike, was reported in which several boats belonging to the business and customers were damaged and numerous items were taken.

An employee of the business found a cellphone in one of the boats that didn’t belong to anyone there and appeared to have been dropped by whoever broke in. Hot Springs police Detective Les Jessup got a search warrant to extract data from the phone which had multiple user accounts allegedly traced back to Lynch.

Numerous photos were found on the phone of marine stereos, battery chargers and other marine equipment like the items reported stolen. There were also messages pulled from the phone related to the stolen items in which Trader Bills was referred to as “Raider Bills.”

Detective Shaun Stillian spoke with one of the boat owners who had several items stolen, including a charger, jumper box and three Interstate batteries. Some of the photos pulled from the phone were of similar items which were shown to the owner who confirmed the items belonged to him.

Stillian also spoke to a boat owner who had several thousand dollars’ worth of fishing equipment stolen, including 12 to 15 rods and reels, several boxes of lures and other items. LeadsOnline was checked and a pawn ticket found from 270 Pawn Shop, 4430 Albert Pike, for 10 rods and reels, three boxes of lures and a depth finder sold on Jan. 2.

The boat owner met Stillian at the pawnshop and he was reportedly able to identify $3,500 worth of the equipment as his. The depth finder was found to belong to Trader Bill’s. The total value of the property was $4,800.

Stillian got video from the pawnshop that allegedly showed Lynch and another known suspect pawning the stolen items. The affidavit notes the total amount of items stolen from Trader Bills was $9,590 and damages to the boats and the fence at the storage facility was estimated at $14,495.

According to the affidavit on the felony fleeing and criminal mischief charges, on Feb. 28, shortly after 4:30 a.m., Officer 1st Class Jonathan Smith was at Walmart, 1601 Albert Pike, attempting to locate a red 2011 Chevrolet Equinox suspected in a felony theft at the store.

He spotted the Equinox pulling through the lot and followed it onto Airport Road where he attempted a traffic stop. The vehicle accelerated across Airport headed east on West St. Louis with Smith in pursuit.

He noted the vehicle ran all the stop signs on West St. Louis and was clocked doing 55 mph in a 25 mph zone. The pursuit continued to North Patterson Street where he lost sight of it. While stopped at the corner of Albert Pike and North Patterson, Smith said he spotted the vehicle again “stuck inside the building” at 304 Albert Pike.

He got out and approached the vehicle and ordered the driver, whom he recognized as Lynch, to show his hands. Lynch allegedly ignored Smith and “began driving forward and backwards inside the building, trying to free his vehicle.”

After knocking out the east wall of the building with his rear bumper, Lynch broke free and sped westbound on Albert Pike. The pursuit continued for another 20 minutes out Albert Pike with the Equinox reaching speeds in excess of 90 mph and Smith finally terminated it after Lynch crossed into Montgomery County.

Damages to the building on Albert Pike were estimated at $14,000.

According to the affidavit regarding Lynch’s arrest, around 3 a.m. Tuesday, Smith and Officers Zachary Brown and Billy Perkins obtained information Lynch, who had multiple felony warrants at that point, was possibly in the area of Spring and Illinois streets.

Brown and Perkins approached the area from Grand and Spring while Smith and his K-9 partner, Bear, came down Illinois. Brown reportedly spotted Lynch standing on the side of Spring near a green Toyota passenger car and he and Perkins got out and ordered Lynch to get on the ground as Smith and Bear stood nearby.

After several failed attempts to get Lynch to cooperate, Smith warned him that Bear would be used to take him into custody. At that point, Lynch finally complied and was handcuffed behind his back and patted down.

Officers allegedly found a Band-Aid container in his pants pocket and a glass pipe. Inside the container were 2.9 grams of what later tested positive for meth, a digital scale, small baggie and a magnifying glass.

Lynch allegedly became combative as they tried to transport him, slamming his head against Brown’s vehicle. They finally got him into Perkins’ unit, but while en route to the jail he allegedly moved his hands to the front of his body and began violently kicking the rear driver’s side door.

The door was damaged to the point Perkins was unable to get it open and he had to have assistance from Garland County sheriff’s deputies at the jail in getting Lynch out.

Source: http://www.hotsr.com/news/2019/apr/03/royal-man-arrested-after-crime-spree-20/

Pawn shop ordinance approved by Board

By Scott Cousins

March 24, 2019

EDWARDSVILLE — An ordinance requiring pawn and second-hand stores to electronically submit lists of items taken in was overwhelmingly approved by the Madison County Board last week.

The resolution passed 23-2 with David Michael, R-Highland, and Mick Madison, R-Bethalto, voting against it. Four members were absent during the meeting on Wednesday.

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Pawn shops and secondhand dealers would have to participate in the LeadsOnline system, which allows dealers to upload daily information that law enforcement agencies can access.

Currently county pawn shops submit “pawn tickets” on a weekly basis to the Sheriff’s Department. The tickets are either hand-written or typed and require a large number of man-hours to process, according to law enforcement officials. Secondhand shops were not regulated.

Michael questioned whether all the affected businesses had been contacted, and expressed concerns that by forcing them to go online they could be hacked.

It was noted that several store owners attended the last Public Safety Committee meeting, and the ordinance had been changed because of concerns by one of them.

According to Lt. Kris Tharp of the Madison County Sheriff’s Department, the primary focus of the ordinance will be jewelry, stamps, electronics, precious metals and coins, and construction-grade power tools.

The board also took action on a number of highway-related issues, including approving $176,250 for the resurfacing of State Street in Alton between Rozier and Belle streets; $300 for acquisition of right-of-way for the Wanda Road resurfacing project; 128,000 for the acquisition of right-of-way for the Seiler Road project; 94,500 for work on West Clay Street in Collinsville; and accepted the donation of property along Troy- O’Fallon Road in, and approved a $94,000 funding resolution for the reconstruction of West Clay Street in Maryville.

Source: https://www.theintelligencer.com/news/article/Pawn-shop-ordinance-approved-by-Board-13712688.php

Police arrest two for stealing $25K in scuba gear, valuables

By Larry Hobbs

March 21, 2019

A pair of thieves broke into some storage units at Storage By the Sea early last month in the Lanier Plaza, absconding with approximately $25,000 in scuba diving equipment and other valuables, according to a Brunswick Police report.

But the loot was of little profit until the culprits could find a place to dump it in exchange for cash. And that is how Brunswick Police detectives caught up to Matthew Martin Stembridge and Thomas Lee Jones, who allegedly sold the stolen goods at pawnshops throughout the Golden Isles, according to Brunswick Police Lt. Jose Gladamez, the department’s criminal investigations commander.

In the process, police have managed to return a significant portion of the stolen goods to the victim, he said.

“They had to have come in there with a pickup truck or trailer and just loaded up,” Galdamez said. “Our investigation led us to these two guys, and we were able to find a lot of the property that had been pawned.”

Stembridge and Jones, both 29, remained Wednesday in the Glynn County Detention Center, charged with two counts each of second- degree burglary. Additionally, Stembridge, of Darien, is charged with seven counts of theft by taking and seven counts of theft by deception. Jones, of Brunswick, is additionally charged with five counts of theft by taking and five counts of theft by deception, according to jail records.

The victim discovered the break-ins on Feb. 2 and reported it to police. The thieves had removed the locks on several storage units at Storage By the Sea, 1825 U.S. Highway 17, the police report said. In addition to a large amount of expensive diving gear, the victim was missing other valuables, including generators, expensive bicycles and coolers, Galdamez said.

Detectives first discovered that some of the items had been sold on the Golden Isles Online Yard Sale Facebook page, Galdamez said. Using the internet investigating service LeadsOnline, police began tracking down still more stolen items at area pawnshops, Galdamez said.

“They started selling some of the property in Golden Isles Yard Sale on Facebook,” he said. “Eventually, we began checking the pawnshops and that led us to a good bit of the property.”

The theft by deception charges filed against Stembridge and Jones stem from the loss incurred by the pawnbrokers who unwittingly bought the stolen goods, Galdamez said.

“Sometimes it takes a while, but we are always working to solve these crimes,” Galdamez said. “And we do make the effort to get the property back for those who have been victimized by these crimes.”

The investigation is still ongoing and more stolen property may be recovered, Galdamez said.

Source: https://thebrunswicknews.com/news/local_news/police-arrest-two-for-stealing-k-in-scuba-gear-valuables/article_ec9e1eb4-0a55-5ac4-bc1c-9e86d75bc571.html

Danville Police using ReportIt system to help track stolen property

By Hannah McComsey

March 7, 2019

DANVILLE, Va. (WSET) — The Danville Police Department wants you to be aware of a website that can help recover stolen property. It’s called ReportIt, a free and secure service that allows you to keep track of your belongings.

The ReportIt service is a part of LeadsOnline, an online system that works with police across the country to track and recover stolen property. The Danville Police Department uses LeadsOnline to help track and recover stolen property. The system allows detectives to search for the items using a variety of parameters, including item descriptions and serial numbers. When an item is sold to a pawn or secondhand shop, the product information is entered in the LeadsOnline database and can be viewed by participating law enforcement agencies.

Once you login to ReportIt – you can take pictures of your items and write down their serial numbers. If an item gets stolen, police can search the database to see if it was resold – and get your stuff back to you.

“It makes it much easier for us identify stolen property when we’ve, say, done a search warrant, gone to a house and recovered property and are trying to place it back with the owners,” said Lt. Richard Chivvis with the Danville Police Department, “We really like to be able to return stolen property to the owners.”

Danville Police say this website has already helped them in one stolen property case.

Source: https://wset.com/news/local/danville-police-using-reportit-system-to-help-track-stolen-property

I-TEAM INVESTIGATES: If you’re a property crime victim, this one thing will up your chances of getting your stuff back

By Liz Owens

February 25, 2019

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) — A shooting, bank robbery and a murder – we told you about all three last week, but the actual chance of a violent crime happening to you is less than half a percent.

But property crimes? We are 10 times more likely to be the victim of a property crime.

How do you prevent yourself from becoming a statistic?

First, let’s look at the statistics.

According to NeighborhoodScout.com, 1 in 26 people in Augusta are a victim of theft, burglary, or larceny.

Before he became a spokesperson for the sheriff, Sgt. William McCarty worked in property crimes. So, what items are stolen the most?

“Hands down, electronics,” McCarty said.

From March through December 2018, deputies investigated more than 1,700 burglaries and 2,100 thefts in Richmond County.

National statistics show you only have about a 30 percent chance of getting something stolen back. McCarty said there’s a way to protect yourself and raise your odds.

“The biggest obstacle we run into is we can’t identify the items once recovered,” McCarty said.

That means investigators don’t have a way to link a stolen item to the owner. In some cases, however, the owner can’t prove it belongs to him.

“I can’t tell you the amount of unclaimed property that we have run across the years which couldn’t be identified through a serial number,” McCarty said.

A serial number is a unique number or string of characters that identifies a product. Investigators can use them to identify a specific device.

Deputy Shields works the property crimes unit and scans for serial numbers quite often through a database called Leads Online. Leads connects law enforcement agents with pawn shops.

Anytime someone reports something stolen, an investigator will enter the serial number — if the owner has it — into the system. Anytime someone pawns something, the pawn shop will enter serial number into the same system.

That’s how Greg Driggers, a local pawn shop owner, helped deputies nab a guy last year.

Hopefully you’ll never become a victim of theft, but if it happens, this will greatly increase the chances of getting your stuff back. Leads Online isn’t just for law enforcement. Anybody can register something they own on here. If it’s stolen, investigators can immediately link the serial number to you or vice versa.

“The more documentation you have, the more chance you have if getting it back recovered, and it makes it a lot easier for your insurance company as well,” McCarty said.

Source: https://www.wrdw.com/content/news/I-TEAM-INVESTIGATES-If-youre-a-property-crime-victim-this-one-thing-will-up-your-chances-of-getting-your-stuff-back-506342431.html

Man takes plea on felony charges

By Bradly Gill

February 19, 2019

A Louann man faces up to 10 years in prison as a result of plea deals from two separate felony cases.

Duston Abeyta pleaded guilty in the Circuit Court of Ouachita County last week to residential burglary and theft of property worth more than $1,000, but less than $5,000.

Court documents state that on July 18, 2018, the Ouachita County Sheriff’s Office was contacted by a woman in Harmony Grove who stated that a Duston Abeyta and Kory Barnes had been staying with her at her home. She stated that there was property in her home and in her shed that had been brought there by Abeyta and Barnes that she believed to have been stolen. Officers went to the home and she showed them several totes of glassware and took them to her shed where there were bags of Dale Earnhardt Sr. and Tony Stewart memorabilia.

The reporting officer also states seeing a vacuum cleaner, crossbow and tools, and paperwork inside one of the bags that had the name of a Texas resident. They contacted the McCamey Texas Police Department, and they made contact with the Texas resident. A man then made contact with OCSD and told them that he owned a residence along Arkansas 376 South that had a lot of items in it similar to what was described.

The man stated that the value of the items as being close to $5,000 or more. He stated that he would come to Arkansas, visit the residence on Arkansas 376 South, inventory everything still missing and give a value on what had been recovered. Officers then went to the man’s residence where they found that the back door broken and open, and a shed behind the house that had the lock torn off and items dragged out. The owner later reported that a welder had been taken.

The Harmony Grove resident went to the sheriff’s department and was interviewed about the stolen items and the residence where they had been stolen from. She said Abeyta and Barnes had been taking the items to her residence over a month, and that Abeyta told her that they took the items came from a double-wide trailer he called the “honey hole.”

In an interview with Barnes, he stated that he and Abeyta had gone to the trailer rand shed on two different occasions and had stolen things. Barnes stated that Abeyta was the person who told him about it the residence, and that Abeyta called “the honey hole.

On July 17, 2018 a person contacted the Ouachita County Sheriff’s Department and stated that someone had stolen his 2012 Can-Am Commander 1000 Side-by-Side which was valued at $11,500.00 and that was chained to a tree on Ouachita 75 next to his deer camp.

Vaughn described the suspects and the vehicle they were driving. While deputies were responding to the location, they saw a vehicle on Arkansas 24 that fit the description of the suspects’ truck. Deputies initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle identify the occupants as Barnes and Abeyta. Deputies then asked if they had any information about a stolen side-by side,. Abeyta admitted that they had stolen the side-by-side and hid it in a wooded area along Arkansas 24 and Ouachita 23.

Barnes and Abeyta were taken into custody and transported to the Ouachita County Sheriffs Department.

Both were charged with theft of property worth more than $5,000. CID Investigator Captain David Pennington responded to the scene and took photos of the side-by-side and gathered information, and the side-by-side was located in the area that Abeyta had given.

During the course of the investigation, a witness provided the Criminal Investigation Division with a picture that had been taken on his cellular phone. The picture showed a truck with a side-by-side in the back.

The truck was identified as the suspect’s vehicle, and the side-by-side was the one the belonged to the victim.

Abeyta was also a suspect in a burglary of property on Highway 7 that was stripped of copper tubing, a pressure washer and large air compressor, court documents show.

A search was conducted through www. leadsonline to see if any copper tubing had been scrapped during that particular time-frame. The website shows that during that time, a local metal business had bought tubing from Abeyta. Upon his arrest, Abeyta admitted to stealing the tubing.

Abeyta has previously been convicted of five other felonies.

Court documents also show that Abyeta’s cohort, Barnes, is currently awaiting trial.

Source: https://www.camdenarknews.com/news/2019/feb/19/man-takes-plea-felony-charges/

Serial numbers key to returning stolen property to owners

By Tesina Jackson

February 14, 2019

When thieves steal, the victims want justice — but in most cases, the property is never recovered because the owner doesn’t know the serial numbers.

Cherokee County Undersheriff Jason Chennault said for approximately 75 percent of theft reports the sheriff’s office receives, the owner has not jotted down the serial numbers.

“Always record your serial numbers,” he said. “We have a lot higher recovery rate, a lot higher success rate, a lot higher solve rate on reports where people know their serial numbers.”

Even when a thief sometimes removes a serial number from a stolen item, Chennault said, there’s always a hidden serial number.

If the property owner does not know a serial number, the chances of finding a stolen item are very slim.

When the victim discovers property has been stolen, taking immediate action can make a difference.

“It’s important to fill out a report as soon as possible,” said Tahlequah Police Chief Nate King. “Time is not our friend in stolen property cases.”

Other than providing serial numbers, it is helpful to also supply law enforcement officers with photos and a clear description of the stolen item. Most larger items – such as tools, electronics, tractors, trailers, vehicles and firearms – will have serial numbers, while items such as jewelry and clothing typically don’t.

“That’s how we know if we find your stuff,” Chennault said. “We have databases we can search for property that has been pawned. That’s how we can verify that’s your stuff.”

It’s important to have serial numbers so authorities can check databases such as LeadsOnline, which helps authorities access transactions from businesses like pawn shops.

“We’ve gotten a lot of hits on pawn shops outside of Tahlequah that have stolen property,” King said.

King added that he would like to help create a city ordinance that would require all Tahlequah pawn shops to enter their transactions onto a database.

According to a 2012 study by the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, 40 percent of the time, burglars head to a pawn shop to make a quick profit.

“That’s the most help a victim can give us, is to provide serial numbers,” Chennault said. “There are so many databases out there now. Pawn shops in Oklahoma have a database. Their computer system will dump into a database so we can go in and search how many times someone pawned something and what they pawned.”

If a victim believes he knows who stole his property, authorities must still have probable cause to obtain a search warrant from a judge to enter a residence to search. If an item is recovered, authorities sometimes take custody of the property until the closure of the case.

Source: https://www.enidnews.com/oklahoma/news/serial-numbers-key-to-returning-stolen-property-to-owners/article_7c9cc6f7-ba51-5e42-b868-d25d0309cc2d.html

Home health provider arrested after stealing jewelry from disabled man

By Gerald Tracy

February 12th 2019

SAN ANTONIO – Sarah Ann Salas, 20, has been arrested and charged with theft of more than $2,500.

According to an affidavit, an elderly disabled man hired Salas to take care of him.

The victim told officials he believed she took his jewelry without consent sometime in December.

After police investigated, they found six pieces of jewelry on an online pawnshop database.

Police say the victim gave receipts and photos of the stolen jewelry, which confirmed the found jewelry was the stolen property.

The stolen jewelry was recovered and returned.

Source: https://foxsanantonio.com/news/local/home-health-provider-arrested-after-stealing-jewelry-from-disabled-man

Nursing Home Employee Accused Of Stealing, Pawning Patient’s Wedding Ring

By Steve Shaw

February 7, 2019

Oklahoma City, OK – A nursing home employee is accused of stealing an expensive wedding ring right off a patient’s finger. It’s a story News 9 has been following since early January.

Shamira Williams,35, is charged with Felony False Declaration to a Pawn Broker.

Retired Oklahoma City Police Detective Trela Wishon says Williams sold her mother’s 63-year-old wedding ring to Cash America Pawn in Oklahoma City, for $475 on November 29th. Wishon says the ring is worth more than $30,000.

Wishon’s mother Geraldine Whitaker was a patient at Accel at Crystal Park Nursing Home in Oklahoma City in November. Court documents say Williams was an Accel employee when the ring was stolen, and she had access to Geraldine’s room.

Court documents say Williams told the pawn broker she had owned the ring for more than a year.

“It makes me sick,” Wishon said. “Because she lied number one, and especially because she took the rings off my mom’s finger when she was sleeping. That is totally ludicrous.”

Court records show Williams has been in trouble before for writing bad checks. She’s got a handful of mugshots available online.

Whitaker died January 19.

Wishon says her family will still have to go to court to re-claim her mother’s ring.

Source: http://www.news9.com/story/39929157/nursing-home-employee-accused-of-stealing-pawning-patients-wedding-ring

Authorities say two men deceived local pawn shops

By Ivy Anderson

February 6, 2019

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Over the past few weeks, multiple pawn shops throughout Huntsville have been dealing with the Cosley brothers.

The Madison County Sheriff’s Office says the two men have been stealing credit cards, buying expensive lawn gear over the phone and making money from it.

“Their intent was to steal credit cards when they had an opportunity to buy equipment that they could turn around real quick and then take the money, and use the money probably for more illegal activity,” said Lt. Donny Shaw.

Shaw says the men have been taking the equipment to pawn shops throughout town.

Buster’s Pawn Shop’s pawnbroker Angela Huffman says the brothers came into her store and they bought two lawn mowers from them.

“They walked into our pawn shop and they said we have a zero turn and a push mower we would like you to look at to see if you’d be interested in buying,” said Huffman.

Buster’s Pawn Shop bought the lawn mowers and went about their normal routine of checking the men’s identification, looking at the bill of sale and taking pictures of the men.

Then a few weeks later they got a call from the sheriff’s office telling them to hold the lawn mowers because they had been bought with a stolen credit card.

“And we were shocked because he had the bill of sale, he had everything in order,” said Huffman.

Shaw said on in early January the Mobile Police Department found Nicholas Cosley and arrested him.

“We went down to Mobile and brought him back to Huntsville and placed him in jail on the 13th of January,” said Lt. Shaw.

But the other brother, Nathan Cosley, was never caught. Nicholas is now out on bond.

“One was booked in Madison County but released on bond which it kind of makes you mad because you’re like, ‘okay, you had the money to bond out. Just like that, but you don’t even care that me, us, and another pawn shop is out of $2,500,” said Huffman.

Huffman says the Cosley brothers have been to other states besides Alabama.

“They have been doing this across three states. Mississippi, Georgia and us, and they’ve hit 19 pawn shops,” said Huffman.

“I think the unfortunate loss in this is probably going to be the pawn shops who had been taken unaware of these two guys that stole this equipment,” said Shaw.

And Huffman agrees. She says it will take her shop a while to recover from this.

“When you lose $2,500 in one swipe, you basically have to sell double that to make it up. So it takes a little while for mom and pop pawn shops like us and the ones around Huntsville to recover from that kind of hit,” said Huffman.

The Madison County Sheriff’s Office says they believe Nathan Cosley has returned to his home in Michigan.

Huffman says she hopes both of the Cosley brothers are given justice for hurting these mom and pop pawn shops.

Source: https://whnt.com/2019/02/06/stolen-credit-cards-have-been-used-at-local-pawn-shops/

First Suspect Pleads Guilty In Aurora Double Murder

By Mike Perleberg

February 4, 2019

(Aurora, Ind.) – A woman who helped murder a Vietnam War veteran and his daughter in Aurora has pleaded guilty to two counts of murder.

Margie Thompson and Cody Booth are accused in the January 17, 2018 murders of Booth’s mother and grandfather, Faith Craig and Walter Bryant, Jr., in the home they shared on Douglas Drive. Upon their arrests, the two allegedly told investigators they woke up “dope sick” and killed Craig and Bryant before taking cash and items to pawn for drug money.

Dearborn-Ohio County Prosecutor Lynn Deddens announced Monday that Margie Thompson pleaded guilty on Friday to two counts of Murder. She has accepted a plea agreement of 95 years in prison.

“It is all about seeking justice for the families of Walter and Faith,” said Deddens. “Ms. Thompson is 48-years-old and accepted a plea agreement of 95 years in prison. In the State of Indiana, inmates are required to serve 75 percent of their sentence. With Ms. Thompson, the 95 years set forth in the plea agreement is equivalent to 71 actual years in jail. Ms. Thompson will be 119-years-old when she will be released from jail. She, in essence, accepted a life sentence,” explained Deddens.

Formal sentencing for Thompson will be announced by Dearborn Circuit Court Judge James D. Humphrey on March 26 at 8:30 a.m.

Meanwhile, two murder charges are still pending against Cody Booth. He faces several other charges, including Robbery Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury, Conspiracy to Commit Robbery, Criminal Confinement, Conspiracy to Commit Criminal Confinement, and Conspiracy to Commit Murder.

Booth’s trial is currently slated to begin on March 4.

Last month, prosecutors filed a notice that they would forgo pursuit of the death penalty against Booth and Thompson and instead seek sentences of life without parole. Deddens said the decision was made after speaking with the families of Craig and Bryant.

Source: https://www.eaglecountryonline.com/news/local-news/first-suspect-pleads-guilty-in-aurora-double-murder/

Coin shop owner helps murder investigation

By Gianna Giorgi

January 23, 2019

CARSON CITY, Nev. (KOLO) – 19-year-old Wilber Ernesto Martinez-Guzman was arrested by the Carson Sheriff’s Office January 19, 2019. He’s suspected to have killed Connie Koontz and Sophia Renken in their Gardnerville homes and married couple Gerald and Sharon David in their home in south Reno.

Detectives say the four murders happened between January 9 and January 16.

The Carson City District Attorney’s Office has filed and released a criminal complaint showing some of the property stolen from each of the crime scenes was sold at a coin shop in Carson City.

“We had no I idea it was stolen material,” says Allen Rowe, Northern Nevada Coin owner.

The document reveals that Martinez-Guzman went to Northern Nevada Coin on three different days and sold jewelry that belonged to Gerald David and Connie Koontz; receiving more than five hundred dollars for the items.

Allen Rowe, the owner of Northern Nevada Coin, says he didn’t know who he was buying from.

“There was nothing that alerted us to being out of the ordinary or different. Unfortunately, we just had to deal with someone who was a monster underneath.”

Rowe adds in the 25 years he’s worked in the industry, he has never been involved in a case like this.

“We are always surprised when this happens because being a legitimate business, it doesn’t happen very often. We get a few stolen items here and there but for the most part the criminals or the bad guys know not to sell it here.”

Rowe tells KOLO 8 News Now that’s because his shop is required to have a paper trail for everything.

“We take I.D. on every item that was brought in, we report it each and every day with leads online to the Sheriff’s Office.”

He says when Martinez-Guzman came, the murder suspect gave them a foreign passport for identification.

“The passport name and the name he presented us with, and the police have as a suspect, are the same name.”

Rowe says taking the items to his shop made a tough case easier for authorities.

Source: https://www.kolotv.com/content/news/EXCLUSIVE-Coin-shop-owner–504792481.html

Waterloo pawn rules eyed for improvement

By Tim Jamison

January 8, 2019

WATERLOO — The Waterloo Police Department is looking to upgrade the city’s pawn shop regulations to recover more stolen property.

Maj. Joe Leibold presented the proposed ordinance changes to City Council members Monday and expects to bring them back for adoption in the near future.

Key elements of the plan include a new transaction fee to fund an online service that compares items pawn shops receive to lists of stolen property reported to police.

Leibold said he began doing research on the city’s 20-year-old pawn shop ordinance and met with representatives of the four pawn businesses in Waterloo.

“We started comparing it to other cities and found out we were fairly far behind in how we monitor pawn transactions and trailed (other cities) in a lot of stolen property,” Leibold said. “We were just not having a lot of success.”

The proposed ordinance boosts the surety bond amounts and requires pawn shops to photocopy a government ID when accepting property from a customer. But the biggest change is a new 50-cent transaction fee for each item pawned or sold to the store.

Leibold said the fee will help pay the annual $8,650 cost of using Leads Online, which will instantly compare the pawned items to stolen goods entered into the system. Money leftover from the transaction fee will reimburse pawn shops for items police seize.

“Right now they’re just out the money,” he said. “If we go recover a stolen TV from them, they’re just out the money.”

Using Leads Online will also speed up the process and shorten the time pawn shops must keep items they acquire.

“The pawn shops benefit because right now they’ve got to hold stuff for 30 days to give us time to look,” Leibold said. “Because of the speed, we’ve reduced that time frame to 15 days.”

Leibold said he believes the local pawn shops are supportive of the changes.

“I did not want to affect their business negatively,” he said. “I wanted them to remain competitive and be able to compete in the market.

“They benefit by getting paid back for stolen property and by reducing their holding times,” he added. “We benefit by having the (Leads Online service) essentially paid for by the users.”

Source: https://wcfcourier.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/waterloo-pawn-rules-eyed-for-improvement/article_c94084a6-17aa-5008-ad68-bd58c69188c0.html