Crimes & Criminals

Who Dunnit?

Boulder Book Store won't say which writer tried to steal his own book

Boulder Book Store won't say which writer tried to steal his own book
Scott Foley, who is now the floor manager for the Boulder Bookstore, wouldn't disclose the name of the thieving author but said his attempt to swipe his own tome has become an infamous story told during security training for new bookstore employees.

"We have a series of video and camera shots we show them, and he happens to be on that list," Foley said.

Brazen vandals target public library

Brazen vandals target public library
A library in Brazoria County (TX) is an unlikely target for vandals. The damage isn't limited to broken glass and graffiti. Someone has gone so far as to urinate on books.

Man gets six years in library child porn case

Man gets six years in library child porn case
A state district judge sentenced a man who downloaded child pornography at the Brownsville Public Library to six years in prison.

Stealing Books

The Paper Cuts blog has a piece on stealing books.

They are asking: Dear readers, have you ever stolen a book? Post your true confessions here — assuming the statute of limitations has run out.

Not suprising that several of the confessions are about thefts from libraries.

The Paper Cuts blog post is in response to an essay in the Sunday Book Review called Steal These Books

Cops: Library Stalls; Librarian Disagrees

MONTROSE, NY - State police say they have pulled the plug on an investigation into the possible viewing of child pornography by a patron of Hendrick Hudson Free Library because the library board refuses to cooperate with them. The library director, however, said board members are reviewing the matter, have not made a decision - and insisted that the board is not stonewalling police. "The board is definitely not not cooperating," director M. Jill Davis said Thursday.

Tough Love From a Tough Dad

The following is a post from The Merry Librarian (www.merrylibrarian.com) dated Sept. 27th, 2009. Check out the website for all postings!

"Tough Love from a Tough Dad"

This week’s Story of the Week is one of the rare stories that is genuinely heartwarming (though we’re sure there are more out there!). As librarians–as with any public service profession–we so often see the sad and traumatic family interactions. It is refreshing to witness powerful and positive relationships like this one. Thank you, “Diane”, for this great story!

I work at a small library in an area of town that tends to house the lower-economic demographic. It is not unusual for things to be stolen from our library on a regular basis–most frequently our DVDs. One day, I was at the reference desk when a man came in with a young, teenage boy. The man looked pretty haggard. He had tattoos everywhere (even a cross between his eyebrows! Ouch!) and lots of piercings. He looked like he’d had a pretty hard life. When he came up to the desk, he set a very tall pile of DVDs in front of me–at least 20 DVDs.

“I found these in my son’s room,” he said. “He didn’t check them out. He stole them.”

I didn’t quite know how to respond, so I (rather stupidly) said, “Oh. Okay. So none of them are checked out?”

“No, ma’am,” he answered. Then he knelt down on the ground so that he was eye to eye with me. His son knelt beside him, looking deeply humiliated and angry.

Meth ring used comic books to launder cash, authorities say

Investigators in Colorado say they have broken up a massive methamphetamine ring in the Denver area that distributed pounds of the dangerous drug every week and laundered the profits using collectible comic books.

Story at CNN

Investigator testifies in Sacramento library scam case

Check by check, a veteran accountant detailed the bank accounts Tuesday that prosecutors hope will help them convict three people in Sacramento's library kickback scandal.

Sixteen months after felony charges were filed against two former library officials and the wife of one of them, testimony began in Sacramento Superior Court aimed at bringing the case to trial.

Stolen DVDs Returned to Library

From the Palm Beach Post: DVDs for sale at a Riviera Beach thrift store caught the eye of a shopper who noticed some of them bore stickers identifying them as property of the Palm Beach County Public Library System. The shopper should know; he works for the library. Riviera Beach police have recovered 174 DVDs and nine music CDs, most from the county system but others from other public libraries, Sgt. Pat Galligan said this afternoon. Read the rest <a href="http://www.palmbeachpost.com/localnews/content/local_news/epaper/2009/06/26/0626videos.html">here</a>.

Salt Lake City Public Redefines 362.295

This isn't what library officials mean when they say they want patrons to expand their mind.

Salt Lake City police made 10 arrests at the Main Library downtown for people selling marijuana in the building.

Complaints came in that people were selling the drug in the library lobby and in the downstairs area, as well as outside. Undercover officers confirmed the complaints over a two-week investigation, nabbing the 10 dealers.

Rare books at KU’s Watson Library targeted by vandals

Thieves are ripping off Kansas University’s Watson Library, tearing apart books filled with old and expensive artwork, taking what’s valuable and leaving destruction behind.

Thousands of dollars worth of expensive pages have been cut apart and stolen from rare books dating to the early 1800s, their bindings and remnants left sprinkled in unusual spaces throughout the library.

PA man admits selling faux "signed" books online

PA man admits selling faux "signed" books online: A Reading man admits he forged the signatures of Truman Capote, Tom Clancy and other famous authors and sold them for inflated prices on eBay.

CA librarian accused of fraud

An Imperial Valley librarian is under investigation accused of insurance fraud. She is facing charges of insurance fraud and grand theft. She is acussed of faking an injury while she worked as a librarian at Centinella State Prison to collect more than twenty thousand dollars in workers compensation.

IL library head accused of stealing $135,000

A former suburban Chicago library district official has been indicted on theft and official misconduct charges after allegedly stealing more than $135,000 to fund a gambling addiction. The Cook County State’s Attorney’s office says 58-year-old Susan Quirk has pleaded not-guilty to all charges. Bond was set at $20,000 during a hearing Wednesday.

Patron barred after threatening to ’blow up’ library, say police

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. - Police were called to the public library Tuesday when a patron was reportedly yelling, viewing pornography on a library computer and threatened to “blow up the building,” reports the Portsmouth Herald.

Officers were dispatched to the Parrott Avenue library at approximately 12:20 p.m. when staff reported the man was viewing porn and making the threats on the second floor. According to police, the man had been escorted off the library property an hour earlier.

What drives people to steal precious books

The Financial Times wonders What drives people to steal precious books? “Book theft is very hard to quantify because very often pages are cut and it’s not noticed for years,” says Rapley. “Often we come across pages from books [in hauls of recovered property] and we work back from there.” The Museum Security Network, a Dutch-based, not-for-profit organisation devoted to co-ordinating efforts to combat this type of theft, estimates that only 2 to 5 per cent of stolen books are recovered, compared with about half of stolen paintings.

Police: Alleged thief left library card

Police in Wisconsin said a man accused of stealing beer from a tavern was arrested after his library card was found at the scene of the theft.

Librarian murdered while visiting friend

Librarian murdered while visiting friend: Police have a man in custody for a deadly home invasion on Long Island. The victim, a librarian, was stabbed on Leisurely lane in Bellport. Robert Schivo of Medford spent the night at the police precinct, and is expected to be arraigned later Monday.

LA Library thieves: not as sad as first thought

One of The Blogs from the LA Times picks up on the crime rate story from yesterday.

The news of the thefts is sad — nobody's stuff should be stolen, and nobody should be desperate enough to steal purses from empty library carrels — but it's not as sad as I thought when I first read the headline. Because my initial fear was that people were going to the library to steal books. Now that would really be bad news.

Shhhh ... I'm taking your wallet

Los Angeles Police say the crown jewel of the city's library system recently earned a dubious distinction: It had more thefts last year of personal property -- excluding shoplifting -- than any location in the downtown area.

LAPD Lt. Paul Vernon said there were 31 theft reports filed in 2008, including wallets and purses, followed bicycles, laptops and other electronic equipment. This year, there have been eight reported thefts -- four for bicycles versus three bikes for the entirety of 2008 -- on pace to surpass last year's total.

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