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  1. #1
    DonB is offline Junior Member
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    Unhappy Theft recovery & pawn shops

    What is the name of your state? California

    I have what I hope is a simple problem. My home was broken into a few months back and several high end time pieces were taken. Now they are at a local pawn shop and the shop keeper/owner will not realease them unless the notes are covered. In other words he wants the money he paid out. As the owner of the merchandise what, if anything, can I do to get my stuff back? Shouldn't the pawn shop have checked on the possibility that the watches were stolen? They were reported as such back when the theft occured, included were specific details, pictures, and serial numbers.
    So do I have any rights in this case Any help will be greatly appreciated!
  2. #2
    racer72 is offline Senior Member
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    When you called the police and told them the pawn shop has possession of your items, what did they tell you?
    If you feel my answer is rude, mean, snarky or in anyway not to your liking, I did my job. You don't need to tell me.

    No private messages, I do not reply to them.
  3. #3
    DonB is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by racer72
    When you called the police and told them the pawn shop has possession of your items, what did they tell you?
    I was contacted by the Police. Sorry I should have made that clear.
  4. #4
    Some Random Guy is offline Senior Member
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    What do the police say about getting the items back?

    from google I see this link
    [url]http://www.caauctioneers.org/1947.pdf[/url]
    that is a bill from earlier this year that would allow claimants (people who had their stuff stolen) to get their property back from pawn shops without paying anything. This would suggest that under previous laws, you would be out of luck.

    Try researching whether that bill passed or has become effective yet.
  5. #5
    garrula lingua is offline Senior Member
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    You have to pay to get your items back.

    Submit a copy of your receipt to the detective, for the criminal court to order restitution to you, along with the cost of your unrecovered items. Defendants rarely pay restitution in full, but maybe you'll get part of your loss reimbursed.

    (Hopefully, they have ID'ed the burglar, and filed a case agin him/her. The pawn shop should have a copy of the pawner's driver's license. See if you can eyeball the pawnshop's paperwork.)
  6. #6
    ndecker Guest
    if what is said here is right then it is a load of bull s hit , what the hell ever happened to possession of stolen goods . the police should confiscate the items for evidence
  7. #7
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    Ditto.

    This happens with some frequency. Fortunately, most such businesses have decent records of who provided the items. They will also set the items aside until the victim can cover the note. It seems unfair, but the pawn shop owner is out money, too.

    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM
  8. #8
    outonbail is offline Senior Member
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    Carl,
    since the items are evidence in a criminal case which is still open and under investigation, I have to believe the police and or detectives can justifiably confiscate these items along with any paperwork generated at the time they were pawned.

    Owning or managing a pawn shop, does not make it legal or acceptable behaviorfor a person to receive stolen property. In fact, employees of a pawn shop should be held to a higher degree of expectation than the average layman. After all, they should be able to
    recognize the signs of someone who is nervouors or acting suspicious when they are pawning items which often turn out to be hot.
  9. #9
    CALIF-PRO36 Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by DonB
    What is the name of your state? California

    I have what I hope is a simple problem. My home was broken into a few months back and several high end time pieces were taken. Now they are at a local pawn shop and the shop keeper/owner will not realease them unless the notes are covered. In other words he wants the money he paid out. As the owner of the merchandise what, if anything, can I do to get my stuff back? Shouldn't the pawn shop have checked on the possibility that the watches were stolen? They were reported as such back when the theft occured, included were specific details, pictures, and serial numbers.
    So do I have any rights in this case Any help will be greatly appreciated!

    My response:

    Bring a police Detective with you to the pawn shop. If you can prove ownership, then the pawn shop is guilty of "receiving stolen goods."

    IAAL
  10. #10
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by outonbail
    Carl,
    since the items are evidence in a criminal case which is still open and under investigation, I have to believe the police and or detectives can justifiably confiscate these items along with any paperwork generated at the time they were pawned.
    Sometimes, yes. In other cases it will take a warrant to seize the items. Unfortunately it is not quite that easy all the time. In general, we inspect the items, even tag and bag it, and the pawn shop will hold on to it pending disposition (warrant, paid off ticket, etc.).

    Owning or managing a pawn shop, does not make it legal or acceptable behaviorfor a person to receive stolen property.
    No, but it is not criminal to unknowingly receive stolen property. The person receiving the property would have had to know or it would have to be shown by the police that he/she reasonably should have known that the property was stolen ... this is not that easy to do - even in a pawn shop.

    In fact, employees of a pawn shop should be held to a higher degree of expectation than the average layman. After all, they should be able to
    recognize the signs of someone who is nervouors or acting suspicious when they are pawning items which often turn out to be hot.
    That is not the legal standard, however. They can CHOOSE to act or make further inquiry based on possible suspicious behavior, but they are not obligated to do so.

    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM
  11. #11
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    FYI - PC 496(a) ...

    496. (a) Every person who buys or receives any property that has
    been stolen or that has been obtained in any manner constituting
    theft or extortion, knowing the property to be so stolen or obtained,
    or who conceals, sells, withholds, or aids in concealing, selling,
    or withholding any property from the owner, knowing the property to
    be so stolen or obtained, shall be punished by imprisonment in a
    state prison, or in a county jail for not more than one year.
    However, if the district attorney or the grand jury determines that
    this action would be in the interests of justice, the district
    attorney or the grand jury, as the case may be, may, if the value of
    the property does not exceed four hundred dollars ($400), specify in
    the accusatory pleading that the offense shall be a misdemeanor,
    punishable only by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one
    year.


    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM
  12. #12
    CALIF-PRO36 Guest

    Ostrich head in the sand won't work.

    My response:

    The key word is "knowing". Do you know how a DA proves "knowing", Carl?

    IAAL
  13. #13
    DonB is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks

    Thanks for all the replies After posting my question yesterday I spent hours reading posts
    on this site. Its really interesting to read about all the different problems people have and how they might go about handling them. A wonderful resource indeed !!
  14. #14
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by CALIF-PRO36
    My response:

    The key word is "knowing". Do you know how a DA proves "knowing", Carl?

    IAAL
    Uh ... gee ... yeah, I do. Perhaps you'd like to enlighten us on how simply showing possession equals "knowing"?

    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM
  15. #15
    atomicperm is offline Member
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    From the sound of it, the police called the victim to tell him that the pawnshop had his merchandise. Pawnshops are required by law to maintain and turn over a list of all newly recorded pawns to the police department within a 42 hour window. If the pawnshop had knowingly taking stolen merchandise, why then would they turn those records over to the police for them to find in the first place.

    Be glad that it ended up in a pawn shop, this way you can and will eventually get it back. It was not sold at a flea market and you have no idea where it went.

    Have the detective on the case place a hold on the merchandise. After that you have a couple of options. 1) Do as the above poster says, and pay for the merchandise and ask for re-imbursement. 2) Wait until the case goes to court, the judge will release the property to you and make the individual pay restitution to the pawnshop. However, all this is said with the understanding that you will be pressing charges against the thief.

    If you are not willing to press charges (child, relative) then the only thing that you can do is pay for the stuff. If you are not going to press charges, then the stuff was not stolen.

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