Category: Criminal & Illegal

Wearing The Bracelets Of Persecution

| AB, Canada | Bigotry, Criminal & Illegal

(Two women come in and pick out several hundred dollars worth of things. This is something that we watch for because it is an excellent tactic for shoplifting. Eventually they approach the counter.)

Girl #1: “Why are they watching us?”

Girl #2: “It’s because we’re Native, isn’t it?”

Me: “No, we have employees stationed at various point through the store at all times to create the optimal experience for customers to be able to locate an employee without much issue.”

(I watch the girl slip a bracelet into her pocket.)

Me: “So with the bracelet in your pocket, your total will be [Total]. And in fact they are one for [Price] or two for [Better Price].

Girl #1: “There is no bracelet in my pocket.”

Me: “That’s because your friend grabbed it while you were trying to cause an issue about your race. I watched you.”

Girl #2: “I’d like to speak with a manager.”

(My manager has been watching on the cameras in the back room. We have video of the girl blatantly taking the bracelet. The manager comes out.)

Manager #1: “Girls, security has been alerted. You have two options here. You can hand over the bracelet and pay for ALL of the items, or face prosecution.”

Girl #2: “You have no proof.”

Manager #1: *points at the camera* “We do.”

(They hand over the bracelet and a gift card.)

Me: “This gift card will not be sufficient to cover the costs of these items.”

(At this point security shows up and escorts them out of the store and asks if we’d like to pursue charges. Thinking they learnt their lesson, we chose not to go forward with charges but did place a ban on them from returning. On my next shift:)

Manager #2: “So, what happened the other day?”

(I explain what happened.)

Manager #2: “That’s not what [District Manager] said. She heard from the girls’ mother. Apparently they called her to lodge a formal complaint after the girls said you called them [derogatory term for Native women].”

Me: “Um, no, I called out the one girl for attempting to steal an item. Then security escorted them out.”

(They launched a full investigation into the incident and finally the girls broke down and explained that they were angry that I had caught them and lied to get me fired.)

Needs To Change Your Change Tactics

| Cheshire, England, UK | At The Checkout, Criminal & Illegal, Liars & Scammers, Money

(I’m volunteering at a charity shop. Most of our customers are elderly or middle-aged. On this particular day I’m helping another volunteer put a picture up when a man in his early twenties comes in. He looks around for just a minute or so and grabs a card from the stand at the front of the shop.)

Man: “Just this card, please.”

Me: “Of course. Do you want a bag to put it in?”

Man: “Whatever.”

Me: “Just £1.00 then please.”

(The man takes a note out of his pocket. I take it and start to sort out the change and pass it over to the man.)

Man: “Wait a minute, love. I’ve got some right change here if it’ll help you out. If I give you some coins back can you give me a note?”

Me: *feeling a little confused* “Erm, okay. That won’t be a problem.” *I count the change; I realise he’s left me short* “Sorry, I need another £1 coin.”

Man: “Really? Okay. Tell you what. I’ll give you some coins to make that right. You just give me my money back and we’ll be even, right?”

Me: “Okay.”

(I feel uneasy but give him the money, and he starts to rifle through the notes he has again.)

Man: “Actually can you change this for me instead?”

(He’s leaning over the counter, is quite intimidating, and I am starting to realise something isn’t quite right.)

Man: “I just want my change!”

Me: “I’m sorry, I’ve given you the money you need.” *I close the till*

Man: “But you still owe me change!”

Me: “I can call my manager down to deal with your request if you like?”

(I called upstairs to the manager and told her to double-check the change I had given the man. She came down to confront him and he looked shifty and decided to just leave, despite me “owing him change.” I told the manager everything that happened and she checked the till – he had somehow taken £10 from us, and had tried to take more. We reported him to the police and found out he had tried this on in a few other shops, including a well-known supermarket where he’d threatened the cashier. I later found out that this was a short-change scam or change-raising scam, where the scam artist confuses the cashier to get their money back plus extra. I printed out a warning and left it in the staff room. A few months later another man came in and tried the exact same thing. I said no, closed the till, they caught him on camera leaving the shop, and he was taken in by the police.)

Unpaid Delayed

| MN, USA | At The Checkout, Criminal & Illegal, Family & Kids

(I’m cashiering on a moderately busy day. My current customer is a young woman. Next in line is a mother with a boy beside her, who appears to be about seven years old, a boy who appears to be about two years old in the seat of the shopping cart, and two carts full of food. The seven-year-old is nagging at his mother, running around, and walking into the freezer for the bags of ice. The mom says nothing. I spot the seven-year-old grab several grapes from my current customer and eat them.)

Me: *to the seven-year-old* “You need to leave that alone.”

(The mom shoots me a dirty look. I grimace at my current customer and quietly apologize. She just shakes her head, indicating that she understands it’s not my fault and that she just wants to leave. Once I start ringing up the mom, I notice that they’ve already opened some bottles and their deli food. I’ve made it through the first cartload of food and have it bagged. The second cart has been unloaded and covered the entire belt when the mom suddenly appears to get fed up with her son.)

Mom: “That’s it. I’m done. I don’t wanna deal with this!”

(She grabs her half-eaten deli food, three bags of unpaid food, and begins to storm off with her two children. My next customer and the line of customers at the next register all gasp and stare in shock. I’m flabbergasted and our store policy states that I’m not allowed to try to stop thieves myself.)

Me: *calling after her* “Ma’am, you still need to pay for your stuff!”

(She waves back at me sarcastically and exits the store. I stare at the mountains of food left behind, much of which has to stay refrigerated or it’ll get thrown away. I smile apologetically at my next customer in line.)

Me: “Um, uh, I’m sorry. I have to get all this food moved and you’re welcome to wait if you want to, but, uh, I have no idea how long I’ll be.”

Customer: *nods understandingly* “I think I’ll just go to another line.”

Me: “Thank you. I’m sorry!”

(I paged my supervisor to my till and explained to them what happened. A manager and security had to be called over to document it. I was told that I did the right thing not going after her and also that it was great that I tried to call her back. One coworker came over to start putting all the refrigerated and frozen food away. We were still slow, so I offered to help her put them away and my supervisor told me to go ahead. It took the two of us over thirty minutes to put everything away and we only had to damage out three food items.)

Objectionable And Uninterruptable

| Manhattan, NY, USA | Books & Reading, Crazy Requests, Criminal & Illegal, Popular

(An irate customer has found a book she objects to and is complaining to the cashier. Another customer in a suit and tie is quietly browsing books in the back.)

Irate Customer: “Hey. Hey. Hey, you. Why do you stock this filth?”

Cashier: “I, uh…”

Irate Customer: “No. Listen to me. Get rid of this. It’s wrong. Okay? It’s wrong.”

Cashier: “We just have what people want to–”

Irate Customer: “NO. It’s your job to be a gatekeeper. You protect your customers. Take this off your shelves.”

Cashier: “I don’t choose what to stock. I–”

Irate Customer: “Fine. Manager. Where’s the manager?”

Cashier: “Wait, he’s—”

(The irate customer has already sighted the suited customer and zeroed in on him.)

Irate Customer: “Hey. Hey, you. You can’t have this in your bookstore.”

Suited Customer: “I don’t–”

Irate Customer: “Yes. Yes, you do. It’s right here.”

Suited Customer: “But I’m–”

Irate Customer: “You’ve also got [list of other objectionable books]. You have a duty.”

Suited Customer: “But I–”

Irate Customer: “Don’t give me that free speech garbage. You have a duty. A moral duty. Above the law.”

(As the angry customer keeps ranting, the suited customer wordlessly takes something out of his pocket and shows her. She lets out an ‘Oh!’ and hurries out of the store.)

Cashier: “What was that?”

Suited Customer: “FBI badge. Just in time for ‘above the law,’ too.”

Cashier: “Uh, she didn’t pay for her copy of [Objectionable Book].”

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You’re My Hero-in

, | CO, USA | Bad Behavior, Bizarre, Criminal & Illegal

(I used to do overnight cell phone tech support for a major provider. As I worked on the prepaid side, we tended to get weird or unreasonable customers on a consistent basis, especially late at night. The customer I’ve been working with in this story, however, has been completely calm and reasonable throughout our call. Also note that I have only heard him during the entire call, nobody else.)

Me: “Well, if there’s nothing else I can do to assist you tonight I just want to thank you for being the best part of [Company]. Again, my name is [My Name] and I hope you have a great rest of your night!”

Customer: “Thanks, you too! Good night.”

(At this point the line goes quiet but is still connected. Assuming he either thinks he hung up or is waiting for me to do so, I reach for the release button.)

Customer: “WHAT THE F*** WERE YOU THINKING?!”

(I jump, but realize that he’s not talking to me. For the first time I hear someone muttering to him in the background.)

Customer: “Why the f*** did you think it was a good idea to say ‘heroin’ while I was on a call? What the f*** are you going to do if I go back to jail, huh?!”

(At that point I released the call, hoping the customer didn’t realize we were still connected and the only person I heard talking about illegal narcotics was him.)

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