What a horrible story! I'm gald it turned out ok
I'm glad you got your toys back; just having to
deal with people as evil as that would ruin my week. I had a room mate in
college that bought a stolen computer once. The relationship didn't last long
I think you did what any decent person would do in
the situation, but next time you might want to sue the pawn shop instead of
settling. The only way to discourage
practices like this from happening is to
make the process of fencing stolen gear as painful as possible. Even if they get
a slap on the wrist, it's not a process they will be interested in making a
>& amazingly, the Pawn shops were in fact
within the bounds of law, but way outside anything
>ethical in how they dealt with
Really? Shit. That's not what I've heard but the
laws are different in different parts of the country. Where did you hear that
'Fencing' was legal?
You might have to go out of your way to do so, but
remember you surely weren't the only person who got screwed. You have to take every chance you get in life to fight wrongs
of this sort, since people get away with bad things like this more often than
not - it sounds like it was part of that particular store's business model. (Did
they show you a receipt for $300?) Getting a court date set up in small claims
is not quit as hard as it seems before you begin.
Good luck, and don't leave you gear lying around
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Sunday, March 31, 2002 3:47
Subject: OT: Re: LONG STORY pawn shops +
My Lesson learned
Here is a story for ya which might tellya
somethin about pawn shops
Last summer I bought A beautiful
Black-Ovation Celebrity w/ deliciously low action, in mint condition, for
& $75 US-Dollars; i'm not an ovation fan but became one at that price and
fell in love with that acosutic and used it ofen fro finger picked passages or
coffee house jazz folk gigs with a more traditional singer songwriter type
band i sometimes play with for fun.
Also, Last summer in say July, I
bought a Fender Ultimate Chorus Amp for $150USD from the very same Pawn shop
where i had gotten a great deal on the ovation
& how could I have
ever passed up this deal on the Ultimate Chorus as the amp literally looked
and even smelled brand new
So, I bought the Fender Amp & al l was
very happy with me.
Now....Let's Cut to November, last year, just
I'm in surburban Philadelphia - The idyllic
Bucks County - PA.
& I was stooopid enough to leave 2 archtop
guitars Epiphone Emporor Joe Pass Model & My Beloved Carlo Robelli JB 17
Deep Dish Balck Jazz Bomb in addition to my floor unit including a GR-30, Line
6/DL4, Boss GT-3 in addition to a Boss Sp202 and Zoom 234 Drum Machine left
carelessly in the back section of my Isuzu Trooper while i went into a radio
shack to buy a battery for my Cam-Corder.
Again...very stooopid of me
twas this act.
And justly, according to the law of stooopidty and the
Karma of a Fool who had exhausted his Foolish excemption from harm, I came out
of radio shack, got in my car quite happy that i had finnally gotten a spare
camcorder battery and drove off to go to the local McDonald's for a lite
While driving on my way to the local Mc'Donals, I realized that
it was awfully drafty in my car as i usually even in cold weather keep my
windows cracked, but this time in particular i was feeeling really drafty so i
went to roll up the windows the automatic window buttons.
draft i was feelin wasnt goin away and i noticed i could hear the sound of
traffic more prominently than ever b4 & then whammo: it really hit
As ya can imagine My left-driver -back windows were
smashed out and of course all my gear was missing.
I just lost it -
then i got calm - and then i pulled over - and then lost it all over
I hurriedly went back to where I had parked my car in the
shopping center i was at saw the glass everywhere, and then got on my mobile
phone and called the cops who showed quickly & took an incident report and
I was literally going nuts and in a severe state of both
dire sadness and desperation and pain over losing stuff that i couldnt even
begin to replace as that i never backed anything data up via sys-ex with
custom patches on the gt-3 which are irreplaceable.
and in terms of
cash towards replacement gear, heck, i couldnt just go out of pocket and make
replacements...this was a sever blow to me and AKASH and my
Compounding my sense of loss was My car insurance Co. for my
car said that since it was personal property that it would be covered not
under my car insurance but rather my gear would be covered under my
which just made my depression meter dip to an
all time low as i dont have a home that i own and i definitely dont have
renter's insurance, so the loss is immediately compounding in its impact on my
both psyche, nerves & soul.
then a light goes off in my
Now, i dont know how or why or what triggered this thought but
i said well this crime is still fresh and that based upon the locat6ion
of where it happened and the likelyhood of the person wanting to get rid of
the gear as soon as possible meant that there were possibly 2 choices as to
where the person would go - if - they in fact were looking to take the gear
and sellit quick.
One of the places which was on the way directly back
to philadelphia and very close to where the theft occured was the very Pawn
shop I had been to and shopped at and bought both the ovation and fender
So on this hunch alone, I head out to this pawn shop,
just a fluke as i walk in and see the very same guy who sold me all my
equipment i had bought from them and i ask him jis he had by chance seen any
new gear come by their attention like an epiphone emporor and carlo robelli
and floor units like a gr-30 and he asks me to look directly behind wherei was
standing...VOILA all of my gear is there behiond me and theres a 12 yr old
p[laying Crazy train on my Epiphone .
Now here is where it all
gets real interesting.
I was relieved and felt lke the luckiest person
in the world as that out of all the possibilities which were where my gear
could have been located, i found it on the 1st try.
And it turned out
the pawn shop bought all of my gear for $300 USdollars cash they said which
they paid to "an unidentified man" with no id or name they could actively
recall or no physical features they could remember as the whole trasanction
was so quick.
And so i said to the pawn shop folks "geee ....that is a
shame but your business insurance will cover this and since its stolen gear, u
can hand it over to me as i will be on my way with it".
And then the
pawn shop said not so fast.
My temper began to flare as I sensed this
matter wasnt as close to being resolved as i thought it would be at this
They declared "this isnt your property", "its our property" that
we bought in good faith and that if u want it back, just how much is it worth
to you and that i should also consider them kind and pay a reduced fee on the
gear - MY GEAR - which they were just about finished figuring out what the
markup price would be though for me being loyal customer, they would
give me a discount.
I'm not a voilent person but at this point violence
was what consumed my every thoiught and inner being as that i felt that it was
the only appropriate response...
but a another light immediately went
off in my head saying u are not in a position to compound your misery and that
the evil doers are in the hotseeat and that they - the evil-doers of the pawn
shop priprietorship - would love to have me hauled off in handcuffs and or to
have my case weakened against them by me losing my calm and cool and
legitimacy to my own gear.
So i picked up my mobile phone & dailed
the police who promptly came on the scene and decided to confiscate the
And after much back and forth over the course of a week i made a
deal with the pawn shop to pay $150USD which was 1/2 the amount of what they
paid as i couldnt bear the separation any longer.
But the whole ordeal
taught me a number of intense lessons and brought insight into how these
places of pawn work and what they trade upon and how low they will stoop to
make a buck and replenish their inventories.
& amazingly, the Pawn
shops were in fact within the bounds of law, but way outside anything ethical
in how they dealt with me.
and I came to find out that pawn shops
apparently have powerful enuff lobbies in every state which are set up to
ensure that essentially they are gonna have it on the books in terms of the
law being on their side where the victim of a crime with porperty at a pawn
shiop is not immediately set straight or restored back to where they were
before as that apparently this type of occurence happens with pawn shops
everyday in every town in America.
But the law essentially says these
pawn shops once they buy something it is theirs and that the only recourse a
vctim of crime has is to sue them in court.
i wasnt going to wait to do
that even though i knew and the pawn shop knew I would win.
bled me for $$$ which they probably wrote off as losses based upon the market
value of the gear as opposed to what they actually paid for it.
never leave any of my gear unattended anymore ( i know , i was stooopid
) and i never will buy anything from a Pawn Shop ever again.
have the ovation and fender amp i bought from the Pawn Shop last
i just dont know if getting rid of the gear just compounds
whatever karma came with the stuff or not.
but i assume & accept
the karma for the gear i bought at that [awn shop as i still look for great
deals these days that are"steals", but not stolen and never again will i ever
buy something from a pawn shop.
Im also the type where if i see a 100
dollar bill which isnt mine sitting there in the middle of the street, i wont
pick it up or any money at that matter and claim it as mine becasue i just
dont know the circumstances of why it ened up there and who it came from.
I now only buy gear either online from major chains or local &
reputable music stores which is not necessarily a gurantee that im buying
legitimate merchandise, but i sorta think the odds are a lot lower at a music
store or vendor with a reputation within the local community that i will get
gear that is stolen.
but i also wonder whose gear i really have now and
what pain the person has had where if in fact the gear I now have were
i will never know the truth about the guitar and amp i bought
and i cant think of any way to deal with the karma behind this stuff other
than hold on to it ( God that sounds self serving ).
But i also can
never forget the very real pain i went thru in my own loss &
chalk it all up to debt paid- if there were one i needed to pay.
i do consider myself fortunate. but that's my take on pawn shops
others here may pawn shops differently and have had vastly different
and more perhaps positive experiences but do beware as u just might find your
own personal property on the shelves of these places and u may have to buy
back your very own property.
THE NEW AKASH CD "THE GIFT OF PUNISHMENT"
215.592.9963 business phone