Last Friday my wallet was stolen. I imagine this happens to thousands of people a week. This was very much a crime of opportunity, but the story is too good not to shared.
Last Friday I got a call at about 4:30. I leave for the Post Office every day at 4:45, so I tend to try to rush pretty hard on any last minute inventory buys, between that and the chaos of getting everything loaded up and out on time, I wasn't being as vigilant as I normally am. A man & woman came in, and at some point while I was talking to the woman, moving around my office, the man swiped the wallet off my desk.
I ended up writing the woman a check for $200 for some MTG cards, old star wars cards, and a few old Star Wars Kenner vehicle figures. They left around 4:45, and I went to leave and grab my wallet only to notice that it wasn't where I had set it. I immediately thought it had been taken, but you never want to automatically assume someone has stolen from you, and since I have accidentally left my wallet at home from time to time, I thought there was a chance that maybe that's what had happened.
But just to be safe, I began updating my online banking app. every few minutes. And wouldn't you know, after about 20 minutes, my card was swiped for $10 worth of gas a few miles from our shop. I immediately called to shut down the card and the check I'd just written them. At this point we're already dealing with a pair of "world's dumbest criminals" as instead of cashing the check first, they tried to use the card first. So now I have the stuff, worth at least $500-750 to me, and they have $10 worth of gas.
But it gets worse. The woman gave me her real name for the check, and they called before coming. So I had a name & phone number, more than enough for the police to go off of.
Later that day I took the magic cards to another shop that deals more with them to see what they were worth. Come to find out the cards themselves were worth about $750. The Kenner figures another $200 at least, and the Star Wars trading cards, another $100. So were up over $1000 worth of stuff.
You may be asking yourself, did you have a bunch of cash or anything irreplaceable in the wallet? The wallet had maybe $1 worth of coins in it, no cash, no giftcards, just your standard ID, credit cards, health insurance cards, and a few stamps. All of that stuff was re-ordered, cancelled, replaced, etc. with about 1-2 hours of phone calls. An easy trade for $1000 worth of merchandise. Whats even crazier, there was a full book of forever stamps in the box of magic cards, as well as a Kroger Plus card, both had been taken from me in the wallet, seriously, you can't make this stuff up.
But it gets better.
I'm in my car today, about 4:40, pulling out to the post office, when who pulls in.... the thieves. Honest to God, THEY CAME BACK! The woman kind of whips the car into the parking lot almost like she's trying to block me in, and I honestly can't believe what I'm seeing. She stormed up to my car and one of my favorite exchanges of all time began.
Her: "Do you work here?" Me: "Yes" Her: "I brought you some stuff last week and you wrote me a check, the check is no good, the bank said there's no money in the account." Me: "Yes, do you know why?" Her: "Why?" Me: "Because your boyfriend stole my wallet. I cancelled the check about half an hour after you left." Her: "He stole your wallet?" Me: "Yes, you guys used my check card for gas about 15 minutes after you left, I have you on camera at the Kroger in Mableton (I didn't, but I thought it was a nice touch.), just sit tight for a minute, I'm calling the police right now"
At that point she RAN back to her car, either she didn't know he'd taken it, or didn't think I knew as she pulled out of that parking lot as fast as she could. Luckily, I was already in drive and ready to go, so I just followed her out where she had to stop before turning onto the road outside of our office complex. I snapped a few pictures of her tag, make, model, etc. And followed her down the hill toward the red light on the main road. I was able to pull up along side her again in the gas station parking lot at the bottom of the hill where she had to stop again due to oncoming traffic. We began another exchange.
Me: "I know you guys took my wallet, if you give it back I'll write you another check." Her: "I don't have your wallet." Me: "I know you don't, but your boyfriend does." Her: "I don't have your wallet." Me: "Ok, I already filed a police report with your name on it last Friday (the check was made out to her.) Now I've just taken a picture of your tag, so feel free to lie and run if you'd like, but that's only going to make this worse." Her: "I don't have your wallet, just keep the stuff."
And with that she sped off, presumably never to be seen again.
I called the police when I got back to the store. I can't say I've ever seen a police officer laugh so hard at a situation. They just couldn't believe they actually came back. Shoot, neither could I. But they did, and now the cops have the Name, phone number, tag #, make and model, etc. and expect to issue an arrest warrant tomorrow. What did it cost me, a couple of hours, a few phone calls, and $5 for a new drivers licence. More than worth it for the story and the merchandise.
So you heard it here first kids, sometimes crime does pay.... the victim. As for the terrible thieves out there, watch your back. The swift kick of justice will be visiting you in due time.
And it just so happens I have some pictures of the great merch (less the MTG cards) we picked up as a result of this buffoonery, enjoy!