Pa. man nabbed in toilet theft scheme

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WINDBER, Pa. (AP) ? Police say a western Pennsylvania man's toilet theft
scam didn't end with a clean getaway.

Thirty-two-year-old Bobby Clifford Smith III faces theft and related
charges for allegedly exchanging a toilet he didn't buy for gift cards
at a Somerset County home improvement store.

State police say Smith, of Windber, entered the store on Aug. 28,
grabbed a toilet from a shelf and immediately went to the return line to
exchange it for more than $600 in gift cards.

Investigators say surveillance footage from the store captured the
entire episode.

The Johnstown Tribune-Democrat (http://bit.ly/TlB18o ) reports Smith was
arraigned Tuesday and held on $30,000 bail. Court records don't list an
attorney for him.

___


Re: Pa. man nabbed in toilet theft scheme
On 9/10/2012 1:44 AM, snipped-for-privacy@thecave.com wrote:

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So what part is news or earth shattering? Scammers (usually druggies) do
this sort of thing all of the time. Its the reason normal people get
hassled returning stuff.


Re: Pa. man nabbed in toilet theft scheme
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Home Depot and lowes had a ring of people doing this, cost the borgs
over a $100,000 bucks.

The thieves had multiple photo IDs, and got gift cards back which they
sold on craiglist.

I had wondered how so many gift cards would be available on
craiglist..

This explained it..........

Re: Pa. man nabbed in toilet theft scheme
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What do you consider being "hassled"?

I can't recall the last time I had any problem returning anything,
especially at a borg, with or without a receipt. The only not-even-a
hassle thing that happens is that I get asked for my driver's licence
if I don't have a receipt. No big deal.

The one and only time I had the most minor of issues is when I
returned a couple of hundred dollars worth of stuff to HD and then
later that day found a few more items that I had forgotten to take in.
Since I was near a different HD, I went in to return them there. The
system flagged me as a "serial returner" or something like that and I
simply had to show the other receipts to a manager to get the returns
approved. Same customer, same day, 2 different stores. I can see that
being slightly suspicious. Again, no big deal.

I recently took a pair shoes back to Target after wearing them for a
month because the sole split. No receipt. The CSR looked up my debit
card in their system, found the transaction and credited me for the
shoes. He then called 2 other stores to find out who had a replacement
pair. Heck, I was more of a hassle to him than he was to me.

Where/how do you get hassled when returning things?

Re: Pa. man nabbed in toilet theft scheme
On Mon, 10 Sep 2012 13:13:39 -0700 (PDT), DerbyDad03

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The biggest problem I had with returns in recent years was when I got a
digital camera valued at around $150 as an xmas gift.  The person
bought it at Walmart a month before xmas.  After xmas, I did not try it
right away, and finally did so around the middle of January.  The camera
took terrible pictures, and had other problems.  I *HAD* a receipt, but
they said it was beyond their return policy time limit.  Even after
telling them that it was a xmas gift, that did not matter.  They told me
to return it to the manufacturer, (which would have meant paying
shipping and waiting, and still getting a camera that I simply did not
like).

I asked for the manager, who said that all they could do is exchange it
for another identical camera.  I explained that the camera not only took
terrible photos, but had features that I did not like, and that I wanted
a different brand of camera entirely.  They finally said that I could
get another brand as long as the price was the same or more, and I'd
have to pay the difference if it was more.  I choose a different brand
which cost about $60 more, paid the difference and was happy with that
camera.

From this experience and hassle, I learned to not buy xmas gifts too
early before xmas, and that they should all be tested immediately after
purchase or the holiday.  However, this has caused Walmart to lose some
of their "Black Friday" sales from me, if they are intended to be a
gift, particularly if they are electronics.


Re: Pa. man nabbed in toilet theft scheme
On 09/11/2012 12:03 PM, snipped-for-privacy@thecave.com wrote:

[snip]

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Supposedly, the "black" in "Black Friday" refers to the way businesses
keep track of profits. I think of it being a bad time to go out. Anyway,
I'm spending most of the day putting out holiday decorations.

--
Mark Lloyd
http://notstupid.us

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Re: Pa. man nabbed in toilet theft scheme
On 09/11/2012 10:03 AM, snipped-for-privacy@thecave.com wrote:
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That's Wal*Mart; they are the absolute *worst* company when it comes to
accepting returns.   The principle behind the chain is rock bottom
pricing, with customer service taking a distant back seat.

Jon

Re: Pa. man nabbed in toilet theft scheme
snipped-for-privacy@thecave.com wrote:

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What toilet costs $600 - at the Despot?


bob haller wrote:

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In a normal country (ie - some country other than the USA), when you
return a product, you have to show the original receipt to prove you
actually bought it in order to get the refund.  Unless this guy (or a
friend?) actually bought one of these same toilets and this guy is using
that receipt as part of this scam?.

Very funny - and fitting, that this guy tried to pull this stunt with a
toilet.  An iconic symbol of where you're "headed" as a country.

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