Just thought I’d let you know you’re not the only one that gets hit. Last night my doorbell rang very persistently at 3:00 am. I was about to grab my trusty 1911 .45 to answer the door, but when I looked outside it was a local police cruiser in my driveway, so I opted to answer the door unarmed. The very polite officer apologized for waking me at such a late/early hour and asked if I had “loaned” my new snowmobile to anyone. Of course I had not, and I asked him why.
(Just for some background, I have kept my snowmobiles in a covered trailer next to my shop for the last 3 years, never been touched…until last night).
It seems that sometime between 7:30 that evening when I left the shop and 1:30 am, an adventurous individual had cut off the hitch lock with a bolt cutters and hooked up to the trailer (I’m sure at the time he didn’t have any idea if there was anything in it or not) and made a hasty exit. He left behind the two halves of the hitch lock, and the block the front hitch wheel was sitting in. In a small town about 20 miles away, he offered to sell the trailer to another individual.
What he didn’t know was that he had just offered to sell about $12,000 worth of stolen goods to an undercover task force officer that had been watching him for some time. They agreed on a price and arranged to make the transaction the next morning (today). That’s where my local police came in. The undercover guy waited until this brain surgeon left, then opened the trailer and took my registration out of the sled’s map compartment and the license number off the side of the machine, which traced it right back to me. They filled out a vehicle theft report and filed it last night so that it would be in place with all the VIN #’s and other information in place before any money changed hands.
So…this morning at 9:30, the perp came over to collect his $2,000 for my stuff ($2,000, are you effin’ kidding me???), and as soon as he took it, they slapped the cuffs on him and took him into custody. Seems this guy makes his living driving around scoping out places where a trailer is parked or a snowmobile or atv is sitting and writes it in a notebook so he knows exactly where to pick up his next potential paycheck. They got his notebook when they nabbed him too.
Because they waited until the money changed hands, he’s getting charged with 2 counts of felony theft with up to 10 years for each count plus a possible fine of up to $20,000. Boy did he pick the wrong guy to sell to that night. And a huge stroke of luck for me, no damage to the stuff at all. I checked with my insurance agent today, and the coverage I have doesn’t include theft, so I would have been out $12,000 if that idiot hadn’t sold my stuff to a police officer. As of tonight, my stuff is back in my possession. Less than 24 hours from when I pulled it out of my shop, it was stolen, transported, sold, recovered, and returned to me.
I think I’ll buy a lottery ticket tomorrow! 😎