Friday, July 20, 2012

Serial Chandelier Thief

If I were going to shoplift or steal, probably one of the last items I would think to target would be chandeliers, of all things.  So bulky, unwieldy, and 'jangle-y.'

But according to THIS local news story (with mug shot), a Florida man named, "Nicholas Anderson, of Land O' Lakes, went to Home Depot stores over 61 times in Pasco, Hernando, Hillsborough and Pinellas counties and stole chandeliers through ticket-switching. Anderson, 32, would replace the UPC on the chandelier with the UPC of a cheaper one and then return the stolen chandelier for store credit to pawn for cash. Detectives say the scam lasted from Sept. 1 through Nov. 23, 2011 and resulted in a total loss of over $14,000... Anderson's family told police he did it to support his severe pill addiction."

 How do you conceive of this chandelier scam in the first place, I wonder? Getting only Home Depot store credit seems highly imperfect, too, especially if you're trying to support a drug habit.

The math on this crime spree is notable as well.

He went to Home Depot 61 times and netted a total of $14,000, or roughly $230 in store credit per trip.  (That's actually more lucrative than I would've suspected.)  But he had to go to Home Depot 61 times in an 84 day period (5 days a week for 3 months), and then find buyers for Home Depot store credit slips.  (What do you think those go for on the street: maybe 25 cents on the dollar? Especially when you're flooding the local market with them every day.)

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