Leader

Collapse

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Theft by roommate

Collapse

300x250 Mobile

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Theft by roommate

    I was in hopes I may be able to get some advice on handling this situation. My roommate of eight months finally moved out the weekend of the 7th after we experienced numerous problems with him and his friends. Upon entering the garage that we shared this week, I noticed that an amoire that I stored there was gone (it was purchased for $800 in 2001.) I immediately called my roommate (on the 9th) and was told by him that his dad had mistakenly taken it and that it was in storage. He informed me that he had told his dad not to take it, though he had anyway "by mistake" when the roommate was not present. At this point I asked him to return it and he offered to pay me for it instead, so I gave him a price and told him to pay it or return the amoire in the same condition as it was taken. He agreed to the price, though red flags start going off because here I am having to call him about his or his "dad's" mistake and even though it is a "mistake," he expressed enough interest in the amoire to want to purchase it from me instead of simply returning it. To continue, I wasn't able to completely look through all my belongings in the garage until this past weekend, though have noticed that about $200 worth of electronics are missing from an r/c truck of mine. This truck was stored right next to the amoire and I know that until someone other than myself removed them, the electronics were installed in the truck. After speaking with my other roommates about this, they informed me that they witnessed the roommate and his friend driving around an r/c truck about a week prior to his moving out. So, needless to say, I'm pretty confident that he took the parts as only he and I had keys to the garage at that time.

    My question is how should I proceed from this point forward? I have not received payment from him yet on the amoire and I am seeking advice before I contact him to question him about the car parts. Given our past, I am sure that he thinks I won't notice them and I'm sure he will not admit to having them. I contacted HBPD in CA to ask them what my options are for retriving my things and was told simply to "get your property back or file in civil court." Now I felt weird bothering HBPD about something so petty as this, but I was hoping for more options as he basically stole the items and only offered to pay for one of them upon being caught. Any ideas? Thanks in advance and sorry for the book.

  • #2
    The PD is exactly right. Since he was your roommate there is no way for law enforcement to determine whose stuff is whose. So yes you'll have to file on him in civil court. Give the dad a call, maybe he'll work on his son a little.

    Comment


    • #3
      Go see him.

      Nail his hand to the door jam.

      Offer to sell him one of those Air Force 800 dollar hammers.

      He will see the light.

      I have all the answers, just nobody likes them.
      Kelly

      We are the thin blue line
      between you
      and all the money in the world.

      And no you can't have any.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by scott72
        The PD is exactly right. Since he was your roommate there is no way for law enforcement to determine whose stuff is whose. So yes you'll have to file on him in civil court. Give the dad a call, maybe he'll work on his son a little.
        Scott27,

        Thanks for the input, I appreciate it. I was concerned about that. Does it make a difference if I were to have pictures of it in my room prior to his moving in and before it was placed in the garage and have other roommates that could vouch for that? Or is that something that would just need to come out in court? This may be a naive question, but how do you prove ownership in a case like this, where one party claims something was stolen from them regardless of by whom? Sorry for all the questions and again, I appreciate the help.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by jrouss
          Scott27,

          Thanks for the input, I appreciate it. I was concerned about that. Does it make a difference if I were to have pictures of it in my room prior to his moving in and before it was placed in the garage and have other roommates that could vouch for that? Or is that something that would just need to come out in court? This may be a naive question, but how do you prove ownership in a case like this, where one party claims something was stolen from them regardless of by whom? Sorry for all the questions and again, I appreciate the help.
          I am not a judge,but I am sure any evidence that you present regarding ownership of the property would be relevant.

          Since you already established that he has the Amoire in a conversation with him you should be OK to proceed in civil court with that item

          About the parts to your RC car... If he states that he does not have them you are kind of S.O.L. You can still file a theft report for those items through your police department and maybe if you have a homeowners policy see if anything is covered. You can tell the police that he is a suspect but my guess is those parts are long gone...

          No EZ answers... Good luck
          Retired 02/01/13

          Comment


          • #6
            advice

            Just remember: Center mass my boy, center mass. There is a reason they cut off hands for stealing in foreign countries.

            Truthfully, its a civil matter. Go to the Civil Court and file suit (after contacting his father....record the conversation). That is about your only recourse.

            Comment


            • #7
              It sounds like you asked HBPD to use their position to either make the guy pay your or give you your stuff back. That's what the courts are for.

              If you want to report a theft, the PD will take your report. However, once they do so, it is unlikely they will drop the matter if he later pays you. This means that if there is a provable case, you will be committed to prosecute him no matter what.

              It sounds like this is the kind of guy who would never show up in court, even if he was served with a small claims court summons. If you can be creative in justifying your loss amount, I would sue him for the maximum allowed in small claims court and hope to get a default judgement when he doesn't show. If he doesn't pay on time, I would turn it over to the Sheriff or a collection agency to get your money (they are very effective at doing so).
              Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by wayno1806
                get him to confessed to the amoir, and try to tape the conversation. If you can get it on tape....slammm dunk in court.
                No, no, no, no, no, nooooooooooooooo! Bad boy! No treat for you!

                If he is a civilian, California requires that he have the consent of all parties to the conversation. Without consent, the only time the recording will be admissible is in his own trial for eavesdropping.
                Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by L-1
                  It sounds like you asked HBPD to use their position to either make the guy pay your or give you your stuff back. That's what the courts are for.

                  If you want to report a theft, the PD will take your report. However, once they do so, it is unlikely they will drop the matter if he later pays you. This means that if there is a provable case, you will be committed to prosecute him no matter what.

                  It sounds like this is the kind of guy who would never show up in court, even if he was served with a small claims court summons. If you can be creative in justifying your loss amount, I would sue him for the maximum allowed in small claims court and hope to get a default judgement when he doesn't show. If he doesn't pay on time, I would turn it over to the Sheriff or a collection agency to get your money (they are very effective at doing so).
                  Thanks for the reply. If this guy blows me off when I speak with him about paying or having the parts, would you recommend filing with the PD and then going civil if he doesn't pay? Is it going to look ridiculous if I don't get a report and then show up in court, arguing that he stole the items? You are probably right about his not showing in court, though I have concerns about both options. As I am applying to LE agencies, are there any adverse effects I need to worry about pursuing this? I am tempted to just let it blow over so I don't have to deal with the hassle, though I've had so many problems with this guy that I'd like to see some kind of justice.

                  Also, several of you mentioned recording phone conversations with him or his dad, but CA being a dual consent state, I don't think I can do so without their permission. Any ideas on how this would play out if I just went ahead and did so or admissability?

                  Thanks again for all the advice.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by jrouss
                    If this guy blows me off when I speak with him about paying or having the parts, would you recommend filing with the PD and then going civil if he doesn't pay?
                    That's what I would do.

                    Originally posted by jrouss
                    Is it going to look ridiculous if I don't get a report and then show up in court, arguing that he stole the items?
                    Yes. You need a report to establish your credibility and to show that you have taken steps to resolve it.

                    Originally posted by jrouss
                    As I am applying to LE agencies, are there any adverse effects I need to worry about pursuing this?
                    If everything is as you state, there should be no problem.

                    Originally posted by jrouss
                    Also, several of you mentioned recording phone conversations with him or his dad, but CA being a dual consent state, I don't think I can do so without their permission. Any ideas on how this would play out if I just went ahead and did so or admissability?
                    The law here is real clear. Without the consent of all parties to the conversation, they only time this tape will be admissable is at your trial for evesdropping. In addition, I believe there are some severe civil penalties you may be forced to pay the "victims" for illegally recording their conversation.

                    If you go to court and the guy doesn't show, you will get a default judgement. However, you don't automatically get the amount you asked for. Instead, you still have to justify the amount you are seeking to the judge. In formulating your loss, factor in the amount it will cost you to replace the stolen items including tax, ther value of your lost time from work to go out and buy them, your mileage to go buy them, etc.
                    Last edited by L-1; 05-17-2005, 11:52 AM.
                    Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by jrouss
                      Also, several of you mentioned recording phone conversations with him or his dad, but CA being a dual consent state, I don't think I can do so without their permission. Any ideas on how this would play out if I just went ahead and did so or admissability?
                      As you know, I'm the first to suggest recording, unless it's in one of the 12 two-party consent states...or even in person, in Oregon The consequences of violating that is usually a felony conviction, so forget it.

                      OTOH, see if he's stupid enough to GIVE you consent, in the form of a phone message: intentionally leave him a message saying you just want to discuss what's fair, yada, yada, and then play phone tag, hoping he incriminates himself, or at least records an admission against interest on your answering machine. THAT's both legal AND admissible.
                      Last edited by ProWriter; 05-17-2005, 01:13 PM.
                      No longer ignoring anybody here, since that psycho known as "Josey Wales" finally got the boot after being outed as a LE imposter by B&G978. Nice job.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by jrouss
                        Does it make a difference if I were to have pictures of it in my room prior to his moving in and before it was placed in the garage and have other roommates that could vouch for that? Or is that something that would just need to come out in court? This may be a naive question, but how do you prove ownership in a case like this, where one party claims something was stolen from them regardless of by whom? Sorry for all the questions and again, I appreciate the help
                        Don't take any of this as an attack on you but these are the issues you will have to face at court. I'm just playing devil's advocate on you here.

                        How will you prove when the pictures were taken?

                        Other roomates - the police and courts fully expect that your friends will lie for you and his friends will lie for him. Its pretty standard. Now I'm not saying you are lying, don't take it that way, but it happens all the time. Around here we call them liar's contests and the winner is who can lie the best and bring the most friends to lie for him. This tact might work for you but expect him to have his own set of people to vouch for him.

                        The other reason that this is a grey area is because if the items were being used for mutual use in the apartment - furniture, stereos, etc that are in a common area are mutual use items - then it can be argued that both parties have some ownership of them. Receipts are meaningless so don't even go there. Just because you located the receipt doesn't mean you paid for it, and even if you did pay for it at the store doesn't mean your roommate didn't give you money later.

                        Roommate issues suck. They can be similar to a divorce in some aspects when it comes to property.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by connor

                          Roommate issues suck. They can be similar to a divorce in some aspects when it comes to property.
                          Agreed. One of the most common probs we have in my area..

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Thanks for all the feedback. I've placed several calls attempting to get ahold of him, though he has not picked up, nor has he returned any of my calls. You guys are right on about roommates, this guy has been a nightmare and it looks like were headed to a pretty nasty divorce.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by connor
                              The other reason that this is a grey area is because if the items were being used for mutual use in the apartment - furniture, stereos, etc that are in a common area are mutual use items - then it can be argued that both parties have some ownership of them. Receipts are meaningless so don't even go there. Just because you located the receipt doesn't mean you paid for it, and even if you did pay for it at the store doesn't mean your roommate didn't give you money later.
                              That's not at all true. You don't lose any personal property ownership rights by sharing their use with roomates...unless they were married Keep those receipts.
                              No longer ignoring anybody here, since that psycho known as "Josey Wales" finally got the boot after being outed as a LE imposter by B&G978. Nice job.

                              Comment

                              MR300x250 Tablet

                              Collapse

                              What's Going On

                              Collapse

                              There are currently 13482 users online. 477 members and 13005 guests.

                              Most users ever online was 19,482 at 12:44 PM on 09-29-2011.

                              Welcome Ad

                              Collapse
                              Working...
                              X