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You’ve Run That Scam Dry

, , , , | Legal Right | February 27, 2019

(I work as a cashier at a big department store.)

Customer: “I’d like to return this hairdryer.”

Me: “Sure. Do you have a receipt?”

Customer: “No, I don’t.”

Me: “Okay, in that case—“

Customer: “I bought this hair dryer for my son. He’s got a terrible illness, and the hairdryer was meant to cheer him up, but he developed an awful rash when he tried to use it.”

Me: “Um—“

Customer: “That’s why I need to return it, see? The poor guy has been through enough; he doesn’t need a rash on top of everything else. His life is so hard. He lost his job recently, and money’s tight, so we can’t afford to waste money on hair dryers that give him a rash, and—“

(The customer keeps talking and talking while I keep trying to interrupt her so that she can start the refund process. During that time, I suddenly realize that I recognize the customer from my last job as a cashier at another big department store.)

Me: “Will you excuse me a moment?” *goes to find manager* “Hey, [Manager]? I’m pretty sure that customer is trying to pull a fast one. I recognize her from my last job. She was notorious for trying to return stolen items for cash.”

Manager: “Are you sure?”

Me: “Oh, yeah. She’s got this tell: she always talks too much and gives a lot of unnecessary details about why she’s trying to return something.”

Manager: “Nice catch. I’ll call the loss prevention guys.”

(The LPs hauled the woman out of the store while she loudly screamed that she needed the money for the hair dryer because of her poor, sick son. The funny thing is that if she hadn’t been such a chatterbox, I might have just processed the return without looking at her too closely.)

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