Stories about breaking the law!

At Least You Weren’t Turned Into A Newt

, , , , , , | Legal | January 18, 2021

My fiance has just received a call from a scammer calling about “a car accident she recently had.” She doesn’t own a car or even a UK driving license, so she passes her phone to me. I resolve to waste as much of this person’s time as possible.

Scammer: “Hello, I understand you were in a car accident recently.”

Me: “Hi there. How are you?”

Scammer: “I am fine, thank you. Can you tell me when this accident happened?”

Me: “This happened on the first of January, 2020.”

Scammer: “And can you tell me what happened?”

Me: “Well, there I was, driving down runway twenty-seven left at Heathrow Airport in my Hawker Hurricane when a Boeing 747 appeared out of nowhere. So I swerved to my right onto runway twenty-seven right, only for my Avro Manchester to be run over by a Boeing 737 coming in to land.”

Scammer: “Okay, and did you suffer any injuries?”

Me: “Yes! I was killed.”

Scammer: “You were? How can you be talking to me now?”

Me: “Oh, yes, I was killed. But I got better.”

He hung up.

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Stranger Danger!

, , , , | Legal | January 17, 2021

My husband and I live in an apartment. It is a nice building with an onsite residential manager (the equivalent of a super), and some facilities like a small gym, communal courtyard, and bicycle lock-up. In short, it is not the kind of place you would expect the following story to happen in.

We have lived there for about six months when the neighbours report stuff being moved while they were out, cupboards being left open when they were sure they had shut them, and so on. I have come home to the television being left on when I was sure I had turned it off, but I just assumed I was mistaken. We joke about a ghost.

I never really think much about it until I come home early from work one day so I can prepare for our holiday the following week. As I approach the door, I hear that the television is on. I am certain I turned it off when I left, but I shrug it off, assuming I was just being absent-minded. However, when I open the door and make my way into the living room, I see somebody sitting on the sofa.

At first, I think it is my husband. Perhaps he planned to surprise me by finishing work early, as well. But as I walk over to the sofa, I realise to my horror that the man sitting there is not my husband; it is a stranger.

When the man realises I am there, he becomes startled, spinning around to face me, clearly not expecting me to be there.

Me: “I… Who are you and why are you in my apartment?”

The man scowls at me at first but then shrugs.

Man: “Oh, it’s okay. The building owner is my dad. I’m allowed to be here.”

Me: “I… I wasn’t notified of any work that needed doing.”

Man: “My dad owns this place. I’m allowed to be in here. It’s basically my place.”

Me: “This is my apartment. You can’t just come in and make yourself at home. It’s a breach of—”

The man stands and steps around the sofa as if to approach me but thankfully doesn’t come any closer. I am suddenly terrified. The man is at least six feet tall and easily twice my weight.

Man: “My dad owns this place. I have every right to be here.”

Unsure of what else to do, I flee to my neighbour’s, where I call the police. I have no idea whether the guy really is the owner’s son, or if he is a burglar making up stories. Either way, I want him out of my home.

The police soon arrive, and I let them into my apartment.

Surprisingly, the man is still there! The police tell him he is under arrest for breaking and entering.

Man: “I didn’t break in. I had the key. My dad owns the building. I can be in here if I want.”

The police weren’t having any of it and arrested him. After everything had been settled, I went back to my neighbour’s, too terrified to go back to my place alone. Even though I knew they had taken him away, I just couldn’t shake that a stranger had let themselves in like that.

It turned out that the man was, indeed, the building owner’s son; however, the building owner had explicitly told the managers not to let him in, let alone give him any keys. However, for whatever reason, the manager had been giving him the keys to various apartments because the son claimed his dad had asked him to perform some maintenance, even though no maintenance or repairs were scheduled.

The “ghost” which had been plaguing the complex was actually the owner’s son letting himself into the apartments. Luckily, as far as I know, nothing had been stolen. He’d just been letting himself in and watching TV, using their showers, eating some of their food, and otherwise just making himself at home while they were out. To this day, I have no idea why.

The manager was immediately fired and a more upstanding one replaced him. Our landlord couldn’t apologise enough. He even offered to reduce our rent for a few months as an apology, even though it wasn’t his fault. The building owner also gave us and the other residents generous financial compensation. As much as I appreciated these gestures, my husband and I found another place to live a few months later because I just couldn’t relax in the apartment anymore and was still terrified to be alone there.

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A Likely Story, Buddy Boy

, , , , , , , | Legal | January 16, 2021

I work in a big box store. As with many of these stores, we have a Loss Prevention Officer — someone in plain clothes, not a uniform, whose job it is to keep an eye out for theft and shoplifters.

One day, I am called upstairs to the manager’s room. Our LPO has caught a teenager attempting to steal several items, and, per store policy, they need an employee to sit with the LPO and the would-be thief while we await the police.

The young man is quite upset and is begging and pleading with the LPO to not call the police.

Young Man: “I’m a good kid ordinarily! This was just a momentary lapse in judgment! I’ve never done anything like this before, and I swear I never will again!”

The LPO and I both stare at him, unable to understand why he would even attempt this as a defense with the two items he attempted to steal lying on the table in front of him.

The items in question? A crowbar and bolt cutters.

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Fail To Fool Me Twice… You’re An Idiot

, , , , | Legal | January 15, 2021

I work at a check-cashing place, and by nature of that business, shady people are always trying to cash forged or stolen checks. We’re very well trained in spotting these situations.

One day, a young man, maybe seventeen years old, comes in trying to cash a personal check. 

Young Man: “I got this for doing some work for [Account Holder #1].”

I attempt to contact the account holder but can only leave a message. I decline to cash the check but tell the customer that if the account holder calls me back and says it is okay, we will cash it. Lo and behold, the account holder calls me and says that the check is stolen.

The very next day, this same young man comes in with another check from a different person. I am astonished that he has come back to me to try and cash it. I go through the routine again but this time I get the account holder on the phone.

Account Holder #2: “My apartment was recently broken into and some checks were stolen.”

When I got off the phone with him, I turned around to inform the customer of the situation but he was gone. Fortunately, I had his ID on my side of the window, so he had taken off without it. I was thrilled to be able to turn it into the police with all of the other evidence.

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Time Is Money, And You Don’t Have Enough

, , , , | Legal | January 14, 2021

I am a paralegal, working in a small office where I also double as the receptionist, which means my work is often interrupted by phone calls. Multitasking and going back and forth between jobs isn’t a problem for me, but the “junk calls” are very annoying.

One phone solicitor calls on a regular basis. At first, I politely decline what they are selling — something about magazine subscriptions, not at all work-related — but they never really take “no” for an answer and keep calling back. Finally, in exasperation, I tell them that my boss bills my time out at $100 per hour with a one-hour minimum, and if they continue to waste my time, we will send them a bill and sue them for it if necessary. I think that will make them finally take us off the list and leave me alone.

Nope! A few weeks later, I get another call.

Me: “I’ve asked you repeatedly not to call here.”

Caller: “Oh, are you the one who said you’d sue us?”  

Me: “Are you kidding me? You have it in front of you that I have asked you not to call and threatened to sue and you’re still calling me!”

Fortunately, that was the last call from them.

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