WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: ‘Who steals from a yard sale?’

Reader report from Schuyler:

Around 12 pm this afternoon, I was having a yard sale on the corner of 45th and Stevens. A white male in his late 40s to early 50s pulled up in a darker-gray Buick 4-door sedan. He had short grayish hair, and some semblance of a beard, and was wearing a bright green T-shirt and shorts. He was friendly and inquired about a number of items — including my Seiko divers watch.

At one point he made an off the cuff remark stating ‘I wish I could afford some of the items you have here’. It was then, when he believed I was not paying attention, that he picked the watch up and put it in his pocket and began walking to his car. I confronted him and he swore he did not take it and hopped immediately peeled out. The Buick was new and had a temporary paper license plate in the upper left hand corner of the back window — which I was unfortunately unable to read. And The license plate mounts on either bumper contained yellow dealership advertisements – although I did not have time to catch the dealership name. The cops were notified and a report has been filed.

As infuriating as the theft was, it’s less about the item and more about the principle — who the hell steals from a yard sale?


14 Replies to "WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: 'Who steals from a yard sale?'"

  • Proudpapa July 7, 2018 (6:04 pm)

    This is why I no longer participate as a seller in the West Seattle garage sale. 2 years ago I walked just out of sight of my sale to show someone a washing machine and came back a minute later to find several valuable items gone. Complete jerks. 

    • WSB July 7, 2018 (7:07 pm)

      Sorry to hear that but today wasn’t Garage Sale Day, this was a standalone. We have crunched the numbers before when somebody wondered about it and WSCGSD actually has a lower crime rate than the average summer Saturday. – TR

  • Chris July 7, 2018 (7:20 pm)

    Unfortunately, over the years this is a common occurrence.   We recall one year when a guy was stuffing clothing in his waist band.   We approached him and told him if he had been in need, he should have asked.   He was told to leave before police were called.   Just like the stores, so are garage sales in things stolen.   We just know it is going to happen.   We have various people watching and things of more importance closer to us.   Still, we know it is going to happen.   We just do not put very valuable things out in our sale.   We sell them otherwise, though wish we could put in garage sale!

    • Schuyler July 7, 2018 (8:10 pm)

      Chris — I was the one holding the garage sale in question, and won’t make the same mistake again with respects to having ‘high ticket’ items out.. at least smaller ones! You mentioned that either you or someone trusted are out watching your things when you do yard sales; ironically enough I was standing about 2 feet away watching him when he shoved it in his pocket. Gotta give it to the guy, he sure was bold! 

  • JanS July 7, 2018 (7:34 pm)

    especially driving a new vehicle, which means, to me at least, that he can afford it. Or maybe he spent his last dollar on the car down  payment…good grief :-\

  • H July 7, 2018 (7:40 pm)

    Well, that is just crappy. Some people… smh.

  • valvashon July 7, 2018 (10:36 pm)

    We were hit two years ago selling infant and toddler items during the West Seattle Garage Sale day, and our sale was a fundraiser for Planned Parenthood no less.  Two separate groups working together showed up at about the same time.  A couple of them distracted us by asking about our rose bushes and other things, others in the group were pulling down hung items and pulling items out of bins.  Eventually they paid for a few things after talking us down on them (the only buyers all day to do that) and after they left we realized that a number of high dollar items like a designer label sweater and Mariners items were missing and neither one of us had sold them.  We never saw it coming, thinking that nobody would ever do that at a garage sale (I did see my dad’s clothing store get swarmed when I was a kid back in the ’70’s and should have recognized what was happening).  I feel bad for your loss and know that our loss was nowhere near comparable to yours.If you are having a yard sale at any time please be aware that this happens- have enough people on hand and make sure everybody is on task and paying attention to what is happening.

  • dogwalker July 8, 2018 (7:29 am)

    A car matching that description was parked this morning (Sunday) in front of 3916 SW 100th St.

  • Me July 8, 2018 (9:31 am)

    Love to help ya catch him

  • face less July 8, 2018 (11:27 am)

    What awful behavior people display these days. Its a garage sale for goodness sakes. And then to read all of the stories of other folks that have experienced theft at their garage sales.I hate thieves but with that said, maybe you should tip off the local pawn shops just in case the guy shows up with the watch to pawn it and keep checking Craigs List to see if it shows up. 

  • Just because July 8, 2018 (1:13 pm)

    Your not the only one it has happened to. What gets me pass the scum is karma. He will get his

  • dsa July 8, 2018 (1:27 pm)

    The temporary paper plate on the car might be fake.  WSBLOG had a thread  while back how that works to hide identity.

  • Sillygoose July 8, 2018 (6:28 pm)

    I have probably had 15 yard/garage sales over the years and every time things were stolen.  Women are the worst! One woman ask if  I could get done bags for her then proceeded to fill her purse.  Another shopper confronted her she laughed and waddled off.  Or the ones who peel all of the price tags off then toss at you what they think its worth. Having garage sales are no longer fun!

  • Swissmiss July 9, 2018 (11:44 am)

    Dude I am so sorry!!!! This is Amanda btw. People are jerks! Our truck got stolen last night from out side our house! 

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