A guy walks into a gym and pays 15 bucks for a one-time workout. Inside the gym bag he’s carrying is a bolt cutter.
He goes in the men’s locker room, waits until the room is empty and then cuts a lock. Luck of the draw. He finds a wallet. He takes the credit card from the wallet and closes the locker and places the lock back as best he can so it won’t look cut open at first glance.
The man walks out, stopping to get his 15 bucks back, claiming he has been called away.
It took less than 10 minutes.
The man knows he has only a short amount of time until the owner of the credit card discovers the theft and cancels the card. The bad guy goes directly across the street to an electronic store and purchases a 42- inch flat-screen TV.
Within30 minutes, the sale is done and the salesman is helping the man load the television in the car.
The victim is still on the treadmill.
The salesman stops in his tracks, slaps himself in the head.
“I almost forgot. We have a special on this television. You get a year’s free extended warranty. Doesn’t cost a dime. It’ll only take a minute to fill out the paperwork.”
The man agrees.
During the next five minutes, for some reason, the bad guy gives his real address and phone number, shakes hands with the salesman and drives to Decatur where he unloads the TV.
The next day, before he can even hook up the TV, he’s arrested for theft and fraud charges.
Two things should come to mind:
I love the dumb crooks. They make the rest of us look smart.
But we, the human race, are lazy enough to keep them in business. Even the dumb ones get lucky.
Stop helping the bad guys
Workout facilities are frequent targets for theft. We probably see half to a dozen of these thefts each week. Most often the scenario is the same: Cut lock and take a wallet, keys and sometimes clothes.
The reason gyms are favorite targets is people bring expensive watches, cash and a wallet stuffed with credit cards. The locks in a typical locker facility are not that hard to get into. People think it’s safe but it isn’t.
The losses in cash and expensive jewelry are amazing. Sometimes a $10,000 Rolex is complemented by the $1,200 in cash that was in the wallet, sitting in a locker guarded by a cheap lock.
Put some sort of plan together that results in nothing of value being in that locker. Just for grins, leave an insulting note to whomever may break in, just in case they do.
Be smart about things in your car, too
Don’t forget cars are easy targets, too. Retail parking lots are often hit.
There are two things the thief can’t afford: Time and noise. In my opinion, your chances are better leaving valuables in the car if you find yourself a good hiding spot within the car that would take time to find. They’ll move on if they don’t spot something immediately.
Use the trunk, but don’t wait until you’re at the gym parking lot to hide your stuff because the crook may be watching. The trunk can be a hard place to find something, especially when a would-be thief doesn’t know if anything is in there in the first place.
Better yet, on gym days, leave all that bling at home. Only take the key to the car — not your electronic garage door opener — to the gym.
A little of this and a little of that will probably keep you from that really bad feeling in the pit of your stomach when you find out your stuff is gone.
Five undercover cops in two cars were in the parking lot at the back of an apartment complex. They were responding to several car break-ins the previous week. After a while they got hungry — just sitting and watching — so they ordered a pizza.
The driver was to meet one of the detectives near the steps at the front of one of the apartment buildings. As the driver pulled up, one of the cops got out of the car to meet her. Suddenly a man comes around from the side of the building and pulls a knife on the driver. The bad guy turned around to see five men running at him with a variety of weapons and strange-looking smiles on their faces.
Later the would-be robber said he thought he was about to get mugged.
I love those dumb-crook guys.
Think about how you would steal from yourself in any given situation. Don’t sit back on “It won’t happen to me.”
Just take a little time and be creative.