What rights do I Have?

Discussion in 'Lost & Stolen Gear' started by SubNoizeRat3691, Mar 15, 2012.


  1. SubNoizeRat3691

    SubNoizeRat3691

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Location:
    Quad Cities, IA
    I Have bought a stolen bass... I was talking with one of my buddies about a new amp I just got, and mentioned the amp bringing out the Warwick growl and he asked what type of bass it was. I told him it was a Corvette I picked up from another friend. He asked about it, and then described a bass that was stolen from him about 6 months ago, every detail down to the odd saddle for the D string. He gave me the serial number of the stolen bass, its the same.

    He filed a police report after his bands van was broken into, and all that.

    I have considerable money in the bass, am I screwed??? Can the police just take the bass from me? Can I get my money back from the guy I bought it from? He got it from a local pawn shop, can he get his money back???

    My buddy say's he wants to settle this as easily as possible, and wants to help me get back what ever money I have in it.

    What are my rights here???

    Thanks for any help!
  2. SubNoizeRat3691

    SubNoizeRat3691

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Location:
    Quad Cities, IA
    Someone please help me out???
  3. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Don't have a clue as to what your rights are but I know the right thing to do. Call the police and tell them you think you've purchased a stolen instrument. Divulge everything including names, dates, etc. so the path can be traced.

    Riis
  4. Johnny Crab

    Johnny Crab ACME,QSC,Fame/Hondo/Greco user & BOSE Abuser Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Location:
    South Texas
    +1
    Anything else puts YOU in a bad, gray area and possibly one with chrome bracelets. Possession of stolen property is a crime.
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  6. SubNoizeRat3691

    SubNoizeRat3691

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Location:
    Quad Cities, IA
    I have been completely straight with my buddy, and also contacted who I bought it from, he is also being very cooperative. the next person in the chain is the pawn shop he bought it from.
  7. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2002
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    I would think the pawn shop would be the one who would get in trouble the most if they don't cooperate. I thought pawn shops were supposed to touch base with local police and keep a record of reported stolen goods' serial numbers.
  8. SubNoizeRat3691

    SubNoizeRat3691

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Location:
    Quad Cities, IA
    as far as I can tell, they failed to check the local database of stolen things, they did however get record of the seller. hopefully that is where the trail ends. I have a feeling I'm out a bass and my money.
  9. Martin89

    Martin89

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2010
    Location:
    Glendale, AZ
    Disclosures:
    Unofficial Endorser: Ibanez, D'Addario, Zoom
    Pretty sure the pawn shop is the one that's liable though and as the biggest operation(not an individual) they'd be more willing to settle if there was an issue. You should be out of a bass but not your money.

    Although considering there was a person between you and the pawn shop, I think it would have to be in order, such as:
    Pawn shop refunds buyer
    buyer who sold to you refunds you

    That's the tricky part in your situation.
  10. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2004
    Location:
    Fort Collins, Colorado
    You need to check with police and do some online research. I would expect that you have recourse to recover your payment from the pawn shop. You will be out the bass - it needs to go to its rightful owner - but my guess is that you can recover the money. You hopefully have your receipt, but if not their records may provide the needed info.

    I would also not be surprised if you have to take the pawn shop to small claims court to get your money back.
  11. SubNoizeRat3691

    SubNoizeRat3691

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Location:
    Quad Cities, IA
    well both guys in this case are friends. The dude who sold it to me said he'd have no problem giving me my money back, but I'd have to do it legally, not just ask him for it back. if that makes sense..
  12. SubNoizeRat3691

    SubNoizeRat3691

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Location:
    Quad Cities, IA
    I did not buy it from the pawn shop, I bought it from a friend who bought it from the pawn shop...
  13. Martin89

    Martin89

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2010
    Location:
    Glendale, AZ
    Disclosures:
    Unofficial Endorser: Ibanez, D'Addario, Zoom
    That's what I am saying, you have to get that guy his money back from the pawn shop first. Which may or may not be a pain in the neck, highly dependent on the pawn shop(do you know if it's a chain or a mom 'n' pop?).
  14. canadian_man_44

    canadian_man_44

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2010
    Location:
    Moncton, NB, Canada
    So do it legally. Turn the stolen bass over to the police and give them all the information on who you bought it from. The Cops will show up at his place and possibly arrest him for trafficking in stolen property. LOL
    If it was me and these guys were my friends, I would go to the pawn shop with both of them, a police officer and a copy of the police report showing the bass was reported stolen. Best case scenario is the pawn shop manager realizes he made a mistake and gives your friend his money back. Worst case, your buddy has to take the pawn shop to court to get his money back.
    You are not responsible for getting the pawn shop to pay up or taking the pawn shop to court as you are not the person who bought the stolen property from them. If the guy that sold it to you is truly a friend, he will give you your money back without any sort of legal battle.
  15. SubNoizeRat3691

    SubNoizeRat3691

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Location:
    Quad Cities, IA
    Ok, I've talked to a police friend of mine. Basically I'm screwed unless they convict the guy, then he would be the one to pay me restitution. Other than him getting convicted, there is no way to get my money back...
  16. Martin89

    Martin89

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2010
    Location:
    Glendale, AZ
    Disclosures:
    Unofficial Endorser: Ibanez, D'Addario, Zoom
    I've dealt with restitution in a motorcycle accident where the guy didn't have insurance. As a party involved you have right to the police report, the court dates, and to write/give a "Victim's Statement" at the court proceeding. Pretty much you explain the hardship caused to you by the individual ie. you bought what you thought was a legitimate bass, had to turn said bass to rightful owner, are out x amount of dollars in which you claim for restitution. State provided prosecutors are pretty helpful from my experience in this area and will push for your restitution to be a part of the individual's judgment.
  17. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Talking to a "police friend" is not the same as reporting the incident to the local police authority. Trust me, there will be an investigation. You will need to be forthcoming with whatever hard facts you can muster including names, dates, places, etc. You sound as if you're ready to throw in the towel.

    BTW, who sold you the bass and will he cooperate with the plan above?

    Riis
  18. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    What does the guy mean "legally"?

    I'd ask him to be specific since he's willing to give your money back.

    On the other hand, he may be talking out of his @$$ and just putting everything back on you.

    He also bought a stolen bass and doesn't seem to be worried about it much.

    +1 to visiting the police station ASAP with both your friends, all of you making statements and putting the police on to the trail of the pawn shop.

    Small claims court should be able to handle this as far as your friend getting his money back from the pawn shop though there may be specific laws that lay all this out for you.

    The pawn shop may have insurance for situations like this and if they have violated state laws regarding purchasing stolen merchandise and the police sit them for it, that fact would be evidence to be use in a case against them. YMMV.

    Good luck.
  19. SubNoizeRat3691

    SubNoizeRat3691

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Location:
    Quad Cities, IA
    My buddy sold me the bass. He bought it from a pawn shop. He isn't to worried about it because he flipped it and made money, he isn't out anything. He means legally as in, he isn't going to just hand me the money back, but if he is required to, he won't fight it.

    I'm going to be putting myself on the police report as a victim, but I'd only receive my money if the offender is convicted.
  20. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    JOOC, has your buddy identified the pawn shop in question?

    This is kinda neat as we have the original victim and two addt'l parties who've benefited from the theft jointly cooperating with the authorities...or so it appears.

    Riis
  21. funkcicle

    funkcicle

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Asheville, NC
    I have years of experience dealing with cases like this, here's my $.02. It is a common misconception that pawn shops have some legal responsibility to check against a database of stolen property- this is NEVER the case. At the very most they might be required to report all of their transactions to a database that is searchable by LEOs (such as leadsonline.com), but the only instance in which a pawn shop has any responsibility over a potentially stolen item is when the item has been identified as such and is still in their possession. The situation you're in sucks- you are not legally required to return the bass to its original owner, but obviously it's the right thing to do. Either you or the original owner is going to have to press charges against the individual who sold it to the pawn shop, that is the only way you will receive any recompense. The pawn shop has a record of who sold it to them, but they will not release that information to you. Some of the more stubborn pawn shops won't even release that information to law enforcement without a court order, but most legit operations already have a working relationship with a local detective who is in there several times a week.

    Did the original owner file a police report? If so then he needs to have the detective on that case accompany him to the pawn shop in question to find out who sold it to them. And I'm sad to say, if they didn't log the bass's serial number with the transaction then that will be a dead end and you will have no recourse against that individual unless the detective can get a confession out of him.

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