Don’t Judge A Thief By Its Cover

, , , , , | Legal | December 21, 2018

(My manager and I are discussing a few matters, including the fact that she doesn’t think I take customer theft seriously because I didn’t follow a customer around that she didn’t like the look of. Another supervisor has come to us.)

Supervisor: “There’s a woman who wants a refund, but I think there’s a problem with it and need someone to check it.”

Manager: “You’re a supervisor; just give her the refund and bring it to me later to authorise it.”

Supervisor: “She also wants $300 in gift cards.”

Manager: “Well, just sell them to her, and give her a refund for the sheets and sewing machine.”

Me: “Wait, what? Show me the receipt.”

(She gives it to me, and I notice it’s for some items I recognise, even though it’s from another store and also has $300 in gift cards on it.)

Me: “Oh, s***, [Manager], you need to come down for this; I think it’s that wom–“

Manager: *cuts me off* “I have other things to do;do what you have to.”

(I quickly head to the counter and find that the customer has left, leaving all of the items she is returning on the counter.)

Me: “Where’s the customer?”

Coworker: “She said she would be back; she just went next door.”

Me: “Okay, thanks. I just need to pull up a couple of sales from a couple of weeks back on the register before she comes back.”

(I pull up the sales, which were reported by the bank as credit card fraud. I note that the customer has joined our store incentive scheme for the sales and cross-check the latest receipt to see if the name matches. Two letters in the name are transposed. I quickly call our security officer so I can gain access to our CCTV footage, tell the staff to let me know when she returns, and race back to the office with the supervisor.)

Manager: “So, are you done wasting time doing something [Supervisor] should have done? What do you think you are doing with that? ” *indicating the CCTV system* “You can’t touch that without permission and a passcode.”

Me: “I have it; you need to look at this now.”

(I pull up footage that shows me turning a corner, and the customer spotting me coming and pretty much running out the door as she says something to the counter staff.)

Supervisor: “That’s her.”

Manager: “What’s her? It’s just a normal customer, nothing up there.”

Me: “It’s the credit card fraud woman.”

Manager: “Doesn’t look anything like her; she looked shifty and this lady looks fine.”

(I pull out my phone and show a picture I took of the CCTV monitor the last time she was in.)

Manager: “Oh, it is her. How did you know?”

Me: “She always buys the same things: sheets and sewing machines. Oh, and also $300 worth of gift cards.”

(I checked our outside cameras and found she’d driven off in a car that clearly showed the number plate. She had scammed our company for over $10,000, and other companies, as well.  She usually would hit each store once, but for some reason came back to our store. She ended up going to prison for five years.)

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