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Stolen Mower Right off The Dealers Lot!

Discussion in 'Stolen Equipment' started by cuttin-to-the-Max, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. cuttin-to-the-Max

    cuttin-to-the-Max LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,338

    Wow Crazy people out there! Anyone hear about the guy who stole a mower Right from behind weingartz then tried to sell it!

    Heres the story:
    Man arrested for theft of expensive mower
    By Kristyne E. Demske
    C & G Staff Writer

    UTICA — An almost $10,000 lawn mower is back on the lot where it belongs after a buyer on craigslist became suspicious of the seller and worked with police to catch the man, who later admitted to stealing it.

    Detective Sgt. David Faber said the Utica Police Department was contacted after a 38-year-old Romulus man, the prospective buyer, met a 21-year-old Macomb Township man in Allen Park to buy a 2007 riding lawnmower he learned about online in a craigslist advertisement.

    The ad said the mower was a 2007 model, used for only an hour, and the pair agreed on a price of $6,000.

    But Faber said when the Romulus man got the mower back to his shop, he found a sticker indicating it was a 2008 model, which retails for almost $10,000.

    “He’s like, this doesn’t sound right,” Faber said.

    The Romulus man then called Exmark, the mower’s manufacturer, gave the company the serial number, and learned it had been shipped to Power Equipment Distributors in Richmond. And when he contacted that company, the man learned the mower had been shipped to Weingartz in Utica.

    Faber said when the man contacted Weingartz, employees checked the lot where the mower should have been and found it missing.

    He said the man then put a stop payment on the check he had paid the suspect, Joseph Hanna, and contacted Hanna to tell him there was a problem with the check and he’d have to pay in cash.

    “I made an arrangement for them to meet at Dave & Buster’s in Utica under the ruse that this guy’s going to be paying in cash,” Faber said.

    That’s when police made the arrest.

    Hanna was arraigned Oct. 29 on a charge of larceny over $1,000 but less than $20,000, a five-year felony.

    “He informed me that he drove his truck, with the trailer attached, into the Weingartz parking lot and loaded it in and drove off” while the store was open, Faber said of Hanna. “He had actually done this before, when they did see him, and he gave them some … story about he was giving a demonstration on a lawnmower when the employee stopped him. They had him unload this and he left.

    “This time he got away with it.”

    Faber said Hanna works for a landscaping business, so he was familiar with how to run the equipment. That’s also why his cousin, who came with him to sell the mower, wasn’t suspicious that he was selling the machine. Faber said the cousin was not charged with any crime because he had no knowledge that the mower was stolen.

    “Mr. Hanna confessed to me everything and he said the cousin just went along for the ride,” Faber said. “They know he works in landscaping, so it was no big deal to see him with a lawnmower.”

    Weingartz store manager John Chambers said the way the business is set up, store employees get to know those affiliated with landscaping companies, so it didn’t look that out of place when Hanna was loading equipment.

    “They come in and they return mowers that they’ve rented. A lot of time you just get to know people and you just don’t pay attention,” Chambers said.

    He confirmed that they had stopped Hanna in the past when they caught him in an implausible story but that he “probably just got away with it this time. We didn’t actually know it was missing.”

    Chambers said they would definitely be tightening the way they do business in the future. The setup of the company means many pieces of equipment are parked outside, but he said they’re working to better secure items so it would be harder for someone to steal them in the future.

    “Like most people, you get lax on things and you re-evaluate it,” he said.

    The mower has since been returned to Weingartz, located on Van Dyke Avenue, and since the Romulus man stopped the payment on his check, no one was out any money.

    “He was truly a good Samaritan in all this,” Faber said.
  2. UfoPilot

    UfoPilot LawnSite Member
    Messages: 105

    He's from Romulus? Does that make him a Romulan? Does Captain Kirk know about this?...:laugh:
  3. JimQ

    JimQ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,139

    HA! F'in people!

    I spent 9 years in Northville. I'm in Beatrice NE now but I still have a Sthil trimmer that I got at Wiengartz in Nothville/Novi.

    I remember hating that you were sooooo close to Sams cLUB....

  4. JimQ

    JimQ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,139

    btw- Im sorry. there are some terrible people out there...

    Im not one of them. Good luck to you my friend.

  5. dieseltech

    dieseltech LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 651

    How bout dont leave the keys in the machine???
    Posted via Mobile Device
  6. gasracer

    gasracer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,049

    Most of these machine use a generic key. Most of use have one on every keyring.
  7. gasracer

    gasracer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,049

    Something like that happened here in Nashville at my local dealer. They guy didn't see the 15 video camera watching him load it and saw his tag number. They went to his house with the police and there it sat.
  8. cuttin-to-the-Max

    cuttin-to-the-Max LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,338

    1 Most mower keys are the same.
    2. anyone who has ever been to the "novi" (its Farmington) loacation they know those mowers just sit outside All day and all night. And i have went off on The head manager about that. I told him I dont want my mower(s) sitting outside all day and night where they can get damaged or even STOLEN!
    They had to replace my hour meter on my dixie since they left it out overnight

    Its like at the dealership I take my truck in for service and i tell them: "YOU DONT LEAVE A 100K+ Truck OUTSIDE! ESPECIALLY when they have a Garage that holds 15 trucks! I've gotten on them too! Came back that night and saw my truck sitting on the lot...wide open. So i called him out at 11PM and he came out to move it.
  9. andersontl2

    andersontl2 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 18

    I worked at a used car lot...we would take the keys out of the cars and lay them on the trunk or hoods to get picked up at the end of the day, well for some reason one night the guy that was supposed to come around and pick the keys up didnt do it and left them on the cars all night long. We come in the next morning and every single one of them is still sitting there. The lot was in the worst part of town and we were all shocked that no one stumbled upon this gold mind at the car lot!
  10. cuttin-to-the-Max

    cuttin-to-the-Max LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,338

    Please tell me u guys stopped doing that after that close call!
    Posted via Mobile Device

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