Fulton (WSYR-TV) -- Local pawn shops have become a popular place for thieves. In the past month, police have seen an increase in people selling stolen goods at shops across Central New York. Now, the city of Fulton is stepping in with a proposed law to protect city pawn shops and people who have been victimized by thieves.
The proposal would require pawn shops to register every item from every customer. And store owners and police say it wouldn’t only regulate theft in the city, it would keep residents safe.
Just two days ago, Mark Haynes’ pawn shop “Cash & Dash Trading Post” took a huge financial hit after a group of teens kicked in the back doors and stole nearly $5,000 worth of merchandise.
“One of the kids was familiar with the place. He actually used to work here and do little side jobs,” Haynes told NewsChannel 9.
The teens were arrested just a few hours later, but now Haynes has an even bigger problem to worry about. His store has become another target for thieves who are giving him stolen goods in exchange for cash.
“There have been quite a few things that have come in stolen that I’ve purchased and the owner came in and said this is mine, who stole it,” Haynes said.
But Haynes isn’t the only one who’s been targeted. Police have seen a huge spike in stolen property at pawn shops around Fulton. That’s why city officials are proposing a new law that would require pawn shops to register all items that come in, so they can better track stolen property.
“This regulation proposed by the city would give us an opportunity to recover that unknowingly stolen property and give it back to the owner,” Fulton’s Deputy Chief of Police, Thomas Ablegore said.
In just the past few months, police have recovered everything from stolen iPods to cell phones and high-priced cameras at local pawn shops. If passed, the law will not only help pawn shops, it will also help victims of theft.
“Our main goal is safety of the public and to make sure the victim is righted,” Ablegore said.