Hidden Camera Catches Rogue Movers Holding Goods Hostage

Rogue movers. They quote you a great price for moving your stuff but once they show up to the destination, all of a sudden the price more than doubles. If you don’t pay up, they won’t let you have your stuff. CBS13 kept getting complaints about one company doing just that, so they set up a juicy hidden camera investigation to catch them in the act, and catch them they did… driving away with all their stuff!

To protect yourself from getting ripped off by unscrupulous movers:

* Get recommendations from friends, don't just go with the lowest price
* Never get an estimate over the phone, they need to see your stuff first
* Don't sign a blank form
* Make sure they give you a "not to exceed" price

Call Kurtis Investigation: Rogue Movers [CBS13]

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  1. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    Refuse your own stuff. Call the police and tell them someone has stolen your possessions. Give them the license plate and vehicle description. It should sort itself out after that.

    • jivesukka says:

      There has to be something more to it than that otherwise you think the first person would have called the cops. The other option is they believed if they didn’t pay the moving company really got to keep their stuff.

    • thatdarnedbob says:

      Suppose that the police would catch 80% of the criminal movers that drove away with the possessions. That leaves you with a choice to pay a thousand or so more dollars to a thief, or a 20% chance of losing all your material possessions. If you don’t know what you insurance policy can cover, that’s not as easy of a choice as you make it out to be.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        You can still file theft charges. Again, with the license plate it becomes pretty easy to track.

        Insurance policies usually cover the transport of home posessions to your next residence.

        • ecwis says:

          If you RTFA, you would see that the license plates are registered to the previous owner. It would be hard to track them down based on the license plates.

          • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

            I DID RFTA, as my name suggest. The person to whom the license plate was registered to knew the person to which he sold the truck. Only one extra step.

            • ecwis says:

              I doubt that he has his real address though.

              • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

                But the previous owner can ID in a lineup the owner, and connect that to the movers (which would be IDed by you the customer.)

                It’s called investigative police work.

        • thatdarnedbob says:

          That’s why I gave the police a GENEROUS 80% chance of catching the thieves, and mentioned “if you don’t know what your insurance covers”. It’s easy to be an armchair consumer, but harder to operate like that in when your entire life’s possessions are at risk.

    • Hoss says:

      Police aren’t going to react kindly false reports of theft. And it’s not their job to solve consumer complains.

      • AI says:

        It’s not a false report.

        • ryder28910 says:

          It is if you owe them money to get you stuff back, but refuse to pay.

          • Reading Rainbow says:

            No it’s not. The cost of moving the items is not direct related to what’s being moved. That’s for them to send your bill to a collection agency for.

          • AI says:

            When the police get there, offer to pay the movers the agreed upon fee. They were trying to commit fraud and theft, both of which are illegal, so it wouldn’t be a false report to get the police involved.

            • ryder28910 says:

              A quote is not an “agreed upon fee.”

              • obits3 says:

                A quote is not an “agreed upon fee.”

                It is if they start moving the stuff after getting a quote. By moving the stuff, they are basically saying that they agree to the quoted price within a reasonable range.

              • Difdi says:

                A quote becomes an “agreed upon fee” if they quote a price, then begin providing the service after the customer agrees to the quote. That’s one of the most basic principles of contract law right there.

          • dolemite says:

            How do you owe money? You can’t change the price of a service after the fact. A mechanic can’t quote you $1,279 to rebuild a transmission, then after he tears it apart demand $5,000 just for the hell of it.

            Sure, if he found a bit more extensive damage, he might have to adjust the price $100 or something, but you can’t double or triple the price on a whim.

            • meltingcube says:

              The problem here is you can’t prove the original quoted price, unless you record the phone conversation.

            • LadySiren is murdering her kids with HFCS and processed cheese says:

              Some states require moving companies to provide binding not to exceed quotes for moving; I moved repeatedly early on in my career and always had these types of estimates provided. I also thought California was one of the states that had this law in place. If true, these guys are then breaking the law, so maybe the police would be more interested?

          • jwissick says:

            This is clearly fraud. They have no license to operate. They have been ordered to shut down. They refuse.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        I doubt the movers were willing to take a “if you can’t pay we’ll just take your stuff back to point A” approach.

        They were refusing to return your items, to which you never granted permission of ownership. You would be correct in filing a theft charge, and it would be the MOVER’S responsibility to file a civil suit against you.

        • Difdi says:

          When I move, I tend to take my more valuable and portable stuff with me in the car…computers, guns, etc. If someone were threatening to keep my stuff unless I paid them double (or more) the agreed-upon price, my likely immediate reaction would be to walk to my car, and inquire as to how much they value their truck’s engine block (while pointing my .30-30 deer rifle at the grille).

          • ssnseawolf says:

            This sounds like an excellent idea.

          • sonneillon says:

            I don’t know how legal that is but I like the cut of your jib. I also like shooting out the tires and unloading the damn truck yourself.

            • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

              why do the heavy lifting if you have the gun? they can unload it under supervision. armed supervision

          • Tomas says:

            State laws would make that a poor choice in my state (to brandish a weapon like that) but I do the same thing with moving my most valuable and irreplaceable items myself – and since it is completely legal here, I open-carry my semi-auto pistol in full view…

            Surprisingly, it tends to keep many people more honest than they otherwise would likely be.

          • RonYnz says:

            Instead of brandishing a weapon, what about using a pair of tin snips or heavy duty wire cutters? You could covertly cut all of the valve stems off of the truck tires (or a tleast 1) and would disable the truck. They would not be able to move with flat tires and a lay person could not change those tires. They would have to hire a tow truck and before the tow arrived you could get more involved in with the police or negotiations. Once your stuff leaves your location… it’s gone forever. We are talking about family memories and photo albums. thats worth what ever damage a broken valve stem and possible tow charges. I’d rather pay for that and sort that out with the authorities then give the movers my money.

    • Hitchcock says:

      The police won’t touch it. The movers will show the paperwork that you hired them to move the items, and then the police will tell you its a civil matter.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        With the blank bill with a name of a company different than that of their truck, which also happens to be similar to a major moving company.

        Yeah, the police won’t think the business is shady at all.

        • egoods says:

          It doesn’t really matter what the police “think” is going on. They wouldn’t be able to arrest anyone, and the best they could do is try to resolve the issue on the spot, but it’s also a safe bet that the moving truck would be long gone before the police arrive. They would do one of two things (I’m not a lawyer but I did take quite a few criminal law classes, this doesn’t make me an expert so if there are any experts please correct me if I’m wrong), either refer you to a detective (who may or may-not be able to start investigating right away), or tell you, as stated above, that it’s a civil matter and there’s really nothing they can do. Officers of the law cannot arrest or enforce based purely on hearsay and assumption, they need to have some sort of proof that what you’re saying is true. It sucks, but it’s also one of the backbones of our legal system. It’s just upsetting that it serves scam artists in this case.

          • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

            I think you underestomate what the police can and cannot do. You can ask to press charges against theft and extortion. Sure, the movers could probably also press some bullshit charges of their own, and we’d all go to jail together. But in the end, in a courtroom, with multiple witness testifying they were also victims of these scammers, you would prevail.

            Don’t pish posh making the first move just because it’s not the winning move. Chess takes a while.

      • Hoss says:

        Alerting police of a crime in progress, with plate numbers and vehicle id is unlikely to result in a “sorry sir, that’s a civil matter”. Expect a court appearance

        • dilbert69 says:

          I think you’re being naive. If you gave them your stuff, where’s the crime?

          • human_shield says:

            So if I let my neighbor borrow my table saw, and he never gives it back even after I demand it, that’s a civil matter instead of theft?

            • 50ae says:

              yep

            • HaveSomeCheese says:

              Absolutely. You willingly and consciously gave your saw to your neighbor. Theft would mean they took it without your permission or knowledge, not that they are refusing to give it back to you. If you call the cops, these guys will say that you arent paying them for the work they did. It becomes a contract dispute then and not theft.

            • gorby says:

              Yep, it’s a tort crime called Conversion.

      • egoods says:

        I hate to say it but you’re 100% correct. I work in an industry that is based off of work authorizations (auto repair). A customer comes in, and asks for a quote for work to be done, I give them said quote and they sign on the line. If additional work needs to be done, I call up the customer and inform them of said issue and they can authorize it over the phone (I always note the phone number called and person I spoke to). They are legally bound to pay the agreed upon price. Now, being that the company I work for is legitimate, so if a customer were to have an issue (i.e. they were charged for something that they didn’t agree to or they were charged and the issue wasn’t resolved and the shop refused to help out or offer a full or partial refund) they could take me to small claims court. I’ve never been sued in the few years I’ve worked there, but I do know from what some customers as well as co-workers have told me that once you take the issue to small claims the judges seem to be inclined to weigh on the side of the consumer (which I like, make the less then honest shops hurt by hitting them in the pocket book!).

        In the case of this shady moving company it gets a bit trickier. Seeing as they use a blank contract and have you sign it (NEVER EVER DO THIS) they can add whatever they want on that contract and say you signed it. Is it fraud? Sure, but it’s also he said she said, and very hard to prove when it was actually signed. Secondly, it’s safe to assume if you tried taking these guys to small claims, they wouldn’t bother showing anyway, and the judge would weigh in your favor. Good luck seeing a single penny of that money though, seeing as they would just up and change names again. So it basically would put you up a creek.

        Calling the police still isn’t a bad idea, ask to speak to a detective, explain the situation, and see if they’re willing to open an investigation. I’d imagine in smaller towns like mine where the case load is very low it wouldn’t be an issue. But in a bigger city it would more then likely just get blown off due to higher priority cases. Basically, by the time these scam artists have your belongings in the truck it’s too late, and it’s going to be a long and painful process to get the items back. I imagine most people would forgo the long battle and simply pay the extortion fee.

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          Except the paperwork is blank exccept for a signature when you sign it. Hard to show you owed _____ dollars.

    • WagTheDog says:

      From the video, it doesn’t look like particular movers wouldn’t politely wait for the police to come, it’s pay now or we take your stuff.

    • common_sense84 says:

      The police don’t do anything. That is the problem. They claim it is a civil matter, but the problem is the movers get to hang onto your stuff until you pay or sue them in a court.

      We need a law that forces them to return stuff when there is a dispute. It’s that simple. Then police can arrest them when they refuse to return people’s stuff.

      Since they are taking possession of it legally up front, this should easily fall under the same rules as shop lifting. That way it is a misdemeanor and not a felony. Which is fine, because all you need is for it to be anything arrestable in order to prevent it.

      • drizzt380 says:

        Extortion is a criminal offense.

        • domcolosi says:

          Unfortunately, often times the contracts are written to allow the movers to raise the price. It’s important to read the contract, because in cases like this the contract makes it totally legal.

    • dg says:

      Crooked movers meet my friends Smith and Wesson. Now give me the keys to the truck. Get down on the ground, hands behind your head. I’m making a citizens arrest for theft over $300. Get someone to tie their asses up, then unload the truck. Put them in the empty truck, lock it, call the cops. Go in the house.

      Let them complain…

      • minjche says:

        Great plan. Especially since threatening someone with a gun is assault in most states (it’s great to see a gun owner who knows how to be responsible with their gun), plus these guys are crooked people and as the video suggests are involved in organized crime. Now you’ve got a bunch of pissed off people who know your address, and you’re probably being arrested for assaulting them.

        • Powerlurker says:

          Texas allows deadly force in defense of property under certain circumstances.

          • Corinthos says:

            Can guarantee this wouldn’t be one of them.

          • Doubts42 says:

            this isn’t one of them.

          • bravohotel01 says:

            Nope! § 9.41-43 of the Texas Penal code only allows deadly force to prevent someone from taking property from you that *you possess*.

            If your moving buddies already have your property, then you don’t possess it, so deadly force is not authorized.

            Now, there is a **TINY** window that you might be able to use: § 9.41(b)(2) says that if you were deprived of your property via fraud, then you can blow ‘em away. However, that’s a mighty big risk for a small reward. Like everyone else said, call the cops and be done with it.

      • duderonomy says:

        People who say things like “meet my friends Smith & Wesson” make me doubt that there’s such a thing as making up a combination of words on your own and then saying them.

      • eddieck says:

        Great plan, indeed. If they’re stealing your valuable (likely over $500) and trying to drive off, you have every right to make a citizen’s arrest, and if you need to hold them at gunpoint to make that arrest, then go for it. Once they’re contained, call the cops and let the cops sort it out.

        As long as you’re willing to pay the initially agreed upon fee, I would think the cops would take your side. Unless there’s something else going on, if you know what I mean…

        • gorby says:

          Stupid, stupid, stupid. The worst the movers would be doing is committing the criminal act of theft and the civil tort of conversion. The *best* you would be doing by pulling a gun — which is disproportionate to the threat to you, and not going to get you a “self-defense” or “defense of property” claim to stand on — is committing assault with a deadly weapon (which requires no actual action with the weapon, only the reasonable assumption on the part of the movers that harm would come to them). If you’re in a state that doesn’t have a citizen’s arrest statute, you’re also looking at false imprisonment, or possibly kidnapping for locking them in the truck.

          To tally all this up — you’re committing two or three felonies to “get back” at one misdemeanor, theft. Just call the cops as soon as they’re holding your stuff hostage, and don’t be an idiot.

          • dg says:

            It’s not misdemeanor theft if it exceeds a certain financial threshold. In some states it’s $300 to become a felony. YMMV in your State.

            What I do know is that I’m not letting the thief leave with my worldly possessions so I have to track them down. I’m happy to pay the originally agreed upon fee, not a dime more. If they want to steal my stuff – I’m going to prevent that from occurring. If I’m arrested – fine, so be it. I’m demanding a Jury Trial. My chances should be pretty good when a Jury hears about a citizen protecting his stuff w/o firing a shot.

            As for knowing where I live? Fine – bring it on. As soon as they come in my house, they’re going to have a problem. And THEN it’s going to be reasonable and justified.

            • gorby says:

              Demanding a jury trial won’t do anything for you at all. Trials are about application of the law, and juries are instructed to do just that, without emotional “this just feels right” BS. If they fail to apply the law correctly, judges can rule notwithstanding the jury’s decision. They rarely do, but that’s how it works in the US and elsewhere.

              If you went to trial for all of that, a self-defense argument would be out the window. Even if the jury somehow decided to rule in your favor, no judge in the country would call that a justified action (you threatened deadly force without being threatened by it, thereby committing an assault with a deadly weapon). Even in Texas, that dog won’t hunt, felony or no.

              Your best bet is staying calm and calling the police. If you can demonstrate that they intended to steal a felonious amount of your property, then they must have entered your home with the intent to commit that felony… and that’s burglary, which is /not/ a civil matter in the slightest.

              • kujospam says:

                You are kind of wrong. Juries are instructed to do certain things, but can choose not to obey certain things. One such thing is that Juries are allowed to choose which facts are important, and which ones are not. Same with the law, which are facts.

    • Bunklung says:

      Let the air out of the tires?

  2. MerlynNY says:

    I used a moving company in Long Island once who started moving my stuff before I got home and my wife called me to tell me that the movers told her that they would be tipping them $50 each for the move (there was 3 of them). Not only did they not get tipped, they lost the job. It’s amazing what some of these companies will do.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      Wait, the movers said you were required to tip them $50 each? Ha!

      • MerlynNY says:

        Yup. They thought they’d get over on my wife. And what’s worse when I called the moving company and told them what their movers were doing, they didn’t seem all that concerned. Put my move off for a few days and hired a different company.

    • egoods says:

      I had something similar happen when my parents had a house full of furniture delivered from North Carolina. The movers did a really good job getting everything in the house and set up in a timely manner, hell they were even nice guys. But at the end of the job our garage was full of cardboard and other furniture wraps. They informed us there was a $40 disposal fee if we wanted them to take it. We reviewed the paperwork, and it stated that the “furniture would be setup where requested, and any unneeded packaging materials would be disposed of”. There defense was that it doesn’t state that they would be disposed of for free, and that they needed to take it, they offered some half hearted agreement of “we’ll crush the cardboard flat for you”. So, while my mom stalled (went through the furniture setup with a fine tooth comb before signing the paperwork) me and my dad opened up the back of the semi and loaded all of the garbage in, closed the garage, and walked them out through the front door. Felt good to pull one over on them after they tried to take us for extra cash. We were also given a partial refund of the delivery costs after we informed the company of what they’re drivers tried to do. They also thought our “solution” was very funny, and that the drivers would be disciplined, and the issue would be investigated to see if they had tried to do this before. I was happy in the end, and my parents have used the company multiple times after, but it still put a slightly bad taste in my mouth.

    • ChilisServer says:

      My husband and I tipped the last movers we had $50 each, but they did an excellent job for a low price, and no funny business.

      That’s pretty bold to “require” a tip, and I’m sure your wife felt very insulted. Good for you for hiring someone else.

  3. NightStalker3 says:

    Check BBB before using a company like that?

  4. catskyfire says:

    I used a local company twice (quite happily, too), and both times the estimates were sight-unseen, based on what I told them. On the other hand, they were a ‘by the hour’ company, so it wouldn’t be hard to realistically give a decent estimate on what I wanted moved.

  5. obits3 says:

    Step 1: Corrupt movers hold your stuff hostage.
    Step 2: Carry Big Knife.
    Step 3: Slice Front Tire.
    Step 4: Also carry shotgun…

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      I was thinking this, ish. I don’t normally encourage casual gun ownership, but this would be one of those moments there it would be useful.

      • ryder28910 says:

        A gun for what? Go ahead and threaten to shoot someone who poses no threat to you and see how quickly your ass gets arrested, while they drive off scot-free.

        • obits3 says:

          Notice I said “carry” shotgun.

          Mover: “You owe me [twice as much as agreed]”
          You: Have you ever seen a [some type of gun]? Believe it or not this thing can hit a [some animal] from [some distance] away. It kills them dead. Now that I think about it, are you sure that we agreed to that price?”

          • TheGreySpectre says:

            Threatening someone with a firearm is illegal. What you just described will get you arrested.

            • JayPhat says:

              He wasn’t threatening. He was making casual conversation.

              • exit322 says:

                Sure sounds like a friendly conversation about a weapon to me.

                • minjche says:

                  You both sound like idiots who don’t know how to be responsible with a gun.

                  Casual conversation? Friendly conversation? Would it be so casual and friendly if you were walking down the street and someone approached you with a gun and asked you, in a casual and friendly way of course, for your wallet?

                  No judge would be able to keep a straight face if you tried your “casual and friendly” defense. How about we take a step back into the real world where there’s real consequences for our actions, hmm?

                  • buckeyegoose says:

                    there is a diffrence of verbaly threating a gun, and brandishing and threating the actual gun. Heck just making the mention that you was a sniper in the military would cause alot of scumbags to think twice, esp if they saw either the weapon at the old house, pictures of you wilth it, ect…

                    • minjche says:

                      Great point, except the situation was described in two separate comments as “carrying” a shotgun, so it’s irrelevant.

                    • ryder28910 says:

                      It’d actually be pretty awesome to hear someone was a sniper in the military. I’d have plenty of time to steal their things while they drive 5 miles away and spend 20 minutes setting up their weapon.

              • yusefyk says:

                The law doesn’t work the way you think it does.

                You’d get to try your argument out alright. In court.

            • dilbert69 says:

              Actually, threatening a scumbag with a firearm will rarely get you arrested as long as it’s an empty threat. Therein lies the problem.

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          Tires, anyone?

        • Grungo says:

          In Texas, you are allowed to use lethal force to defend your own property. I’m not saying I would do it, but you would be justified according to the law in blowing away a mover who was stealing your stuff.

          • ryder28910 says:

            No, it’s not defending your property when you willingly gave it to them, owe them money for the move, and they are completely non-threatening. I’d suggest a refund on your Internet Law® degree.

  6. Thebestdudeeverr says:

    http://www.kimberamerica.com

    I love our 2nd amendment!!!!

    • BenChatt says:

      As a hipster, I’m required to say:

      The First one was better.

      Oh man, time for me to take a nap or something.

    • doobiewondersmoke says:

      Here Here! Something tells me a .45 pointed at their head and them seeing that my hand is steady & the look in my eyes of “I double dare you” would not only allow me to keep my stuff, but I’m willing to bet I get free moving truck out of the deal.

      Oh and for those who would flip the script on saying that they would call the police. I wouldn’t mind. It’s like a drug dealer contacting them after someone stole their crack. Hell I’ll even dial the number for them ;-)

      • ryder28910 says:

        Wow, the amount of stupid right there is overwhelming (considering your username, I’m not surprised). As I’ve said before, if the police come out in your “internet tough guy, but undoubtedly lame in real life” scenario, you go directly to jail, while nothing whatsoever happens to them.

        • doobiewondersmoke says:

          Really? So police show, no gun is in site, the moving guys have not only threatened to steal my possessions but have now falsely claimed that I’ve pointed a gun at them. Why am I going to jail? Some of you seem to be so passive aggressive that you forget that sometimes it’s ok to stick up for what is not only yours, but right.

          • TheGreySpectre says:

            Generally there are several people in a moving company, at least 2. There will be multiple witness with stories that match that can describe your gun, what you did with it, where you put it and the entire scenario, This does not include the fact that if you are not inside your house there may be other bystanders as well.

            • jerm says:

              in california (at least a few years back when i lived there) it’s legal to use a firearm to protect your possessions. you can go to any firearms dealer and pick up the latest gun laws which will tell you what you can and/or can’t do in your state there may be multiple movers, but there’s usually multiple people being moved as well (i.e. your witnesses, not the mover’s). as long as you follow your state’s gun laws, and can cite and prove the law to a law enforcement officer, should they be called onto the scene, no one will be going to jail and you WILL get your things back.

          • mmeetoilenoir lurktastique says:

            Yeah, not so much.

            1) There are witnesses.
            2) The cops will get a direct address. If you have a legally registered firearm, they will then look up said address or name and say, “Hmm! Yep, this guy owns a gun.” That’s when they get a warrant to search the home and take said gun.
            3) You get sized up for an orange jumpsuit, or you have some pretty, chunky ankle jewelry for the next few years. Oh, and you can kiss your gun goodbye.

            Your argument makes no sense, ITG.

            • Sian says:

              They don’t register firearms in this country.

              Where are you from?

              • pot_roast says:

                They do in some states, such as California. But there isn’t really an easy way for an average cop to access that information. The databases aren’t THAT elaborate yet.

                • jefeloco says:

                  Yeah, especially when “databases” mean cardboard boxes with dates of sale written on the side sitting on a shelf at a local ATF office. Even with the background check to the FBI the only information they record is “long gun”, “hand gun”, or “both”.

      • TheGreySpectre says:

        I love all the internet tough guys we have. Most tend to forget that it is illegal to threaten people with a firearm, and if you do it because perfectly legal for them to shoot you in self-defense. And while they may be trying to charge you then the agreed upon price that does not make your actions legal. So have fun going to jail to for assault (elevated to felony level by the firearm in most places) as well as possibly getting shot (and getting the felony charge too).

      • Gulliver says:

        That is so smarrt. They give you your items, but guess what stupid? They have your address. Hope you can sleep well for the rest of the time you live there. Hope you like slashed tires, scratched cars, and maybe your kids fucked with forever.
        Yep, you are SOOOOO much smarter than anybody else.

        • Peter Nincompoop says:

          I’ll sleep very well knowing my loaded snub nose is no more than a few steps away from me. As for the Russian movers screwing with my property or my family in the future, they’ll always remember the fact that I own a nice snubby which I’ll happily discharge at any person caught trespassing on my property.

  7. vizsladog says:

    I think I would check the bank account of the man who is responsible for regulating the movers. I’ll bet that there’s more there than can be explained by his salary…………..I’m just sayin’.

  8. missdona says:

    In NYC (metro), use Flat Rate, Oz, or Moishes, I wouldn’t consider anyone else. Short of that, get lots of bids, check the records and pick from the top 3 bids, not bottom 3.

    • aja175 says:

      Flat Rate is ok? They gave me a quote that was half what everybody else wanted to move from upstate NY to San Francisco. They wouldn’t put anything in writing, didn’t send anybody to look at my stuff, and the guy on the phone was always in a hurry to get me off the phone.
      They seemed kinda sketchy so I went with someone else.

      • Trance says:

        I love Big John’s Movers in NYC. VERY professional. They did an amazing job. They were all really nice too.

      • missdona says:

        I’ve moved 3x with Flat Rate. They’re my go-to movers. You have to be totally straight with your inventory, but I’ve had great experiences.

        • missdona says:

          Sorry, hit submit too soon.

          After you give them an very detailed inventory, they send you a very-detailed flat-rate guaranteed invoice, which you can amend up to the day before. The last time I moved, they sent someone out, but the first two times, I gave them inventories.

  9. Dead for tax purposes says:

    That guy was a great reporter, way to really put the pressure on the commissioners and the crooks (one and the same?).

  10. Mcshonky says:

    eight people for any state is ridiculous much less for Kahlifonia.
    Interesting how after so much time and so many complaints there is no criminal charge.

    The producer was wrong to leave the meeting he should have gotten the expplaination in front of the commission.

    PS next time put a gps tracker in your stuff mr reporter man.

    In the real world puncture their tireS and call the cops.
    When the movers complain, sorry officer I was carrying a screwdriver and tripped.
    Luckily it went in the tire and not my chest.

  11. WagTheDog says:

    Thanks I missed this last night, meant to watch it. These guys ripped off my cute-young-couple neighbors when they moved in. They really thought they were so smart to get such a great deal.

  12. sir_eccles says:

    Check out your potential mover on http://www.movingscam.com

    Note also that interstate moves have stricter rules than most local moves. Local moves will often only be by the hour, interstate usually by weight.

  13. Kanjimari says:

    Ths s nn-ss. f y’r fckng mrn, y sgn blnk cntrct. f y’r nt, y dn’t. Prblm slvd. nl th stpd r ffctd b ths ppl.

    • tbax929 says:

      I read every post on Consumerist asking myself how the commenters will find a way to blame the OP. And the commenters never fail to amaze me.

      • ryder28910 says:

        Frankly, I’ve been a commenter on this site for years; longer than the vast majority of you. This site is full of nothing but whiny, entitled douches who deserve to be blamed for their blatant stupidity. It’s amazing how many people actually *deserve* to get called out for their idiocy, and this case is no different.

        • Aphex242 says:

          Yes, but nobody deserves to be scammed. The sting operation didn’t get scammed, because they wanted to. Of course they signed the blank contract.

          The point is some consumers, particularly less savvy ones, are prone to making errors like this. Simply because you’re a fucking genius and would never allow anything like this to happen to you doesn’t mean the news shouldn’t report on these assholes for scamming little old ladies.

          Got it? Show some compassion, for fuck’s sake.

    • Jasen says:

      This is not a matter of signing a blank contract.

      This is, I just paid the moving company $300 to move my shit, and when they get there, some large men demand another $300 before they unload the truck.
      This is extortion, and your pussy ass would be paying them that $300 too, no matter how hard you try to sound on the internet.

  14. jake.valentine says:

    These politicians and the lack of police involvement is so representative of California’s public employees mindset of the people working for them rather than vice versa. For those who don’t live here, our public employees receive a king’s ransom in salary, health, and retirement benefits. Government is broken in Cali! No matter how bad you think your state is, Cali takes the cake in terms of incompetent government.

  15. MrEvil says:

    If it were movers with my stuff I’d have told them to take it up with my accountants at the firm Smith & Wesson.

    • minjche says:

      That’d be assault, by the way.

      Sorry to ruin your “I’m a tough guy on the internet” moment.

      • Difdi says:

        Might be, might not be. Probably would be in California, but other states have different laws. I know that resisting felony extortion with a firearm is not a crime in Washington state, for example.

        I’d be using my Henry .30-30 deer rifle instead of a Smith & Wesson if the movers pulled this sort of stunt on me up in Washington though.

        • minjche says:

          You’ll have to excuse me for not listing the assault laws for all 50 states and just using the majority. Mea culpa.

        • dilbert69 says:

          Good luck with that. See you in prison.

          • Difdi says:

            Citizen’s arrest for felony theft will not land you in prison. If possession of firearms turned lawful arrest into a false arrest, police would not carry them.

            • SChance says:

              Yeah. Check the RCWs again, genius. They very definitely differentiate between what a peace officer can do and what a civilian can do.

        • ryder28910 says:

          No you wouldn’t. Stop being such an moronic internet tough-guy. And again, I would recommend you get a refund on your Internet Law Degree® , because you obviously have no real understanding of the ramifications of pointing a gun on one’s face given that there is no threat whatsoever.

          • ajlei says:

            You sure are getting some mileage out of that ®.

          • Difdi says:

            I’d say my understanding of the law trumps your understanding of English. Where precisely did I suggest in my post that I would be “pointing a gun on one’s face”?

            A hint: humans don’t have grilles or engine blocks.

            • ryder28910 says:

              Based on your inane line of commenting, I honestly don’t know how you have the intelligence to bring your blithering self out of bed in the morning.

        • SChance says:

          Bull$hit. You MAY NOT use a firearm in Washington state except to protect yourself or others from the threat of bodily harm. You MAY NOT use a firearm in this state in defense of property alone. Try a little more research on the law, or pick up Dave Workman’s excellent (and regularly updated) book on what the laws on firearms use ACTUALLY ARE in this state.

          Or, follow your own advice and spend a few years in jail, and make those of us who are actually responsible gun owners look even worse in the eyes of the media.

          SChance, holder of a Washington state concealed handgun permit

          • Sian says:

            however if you stand in front of the moving truck, preventing them from leaving, it’s deadly force if they try to run you over.

            • minjche says:

              Somehow I feel like if I willingly put myself in front of a vehicle on the road and then shoot at the driver that I’d end up in jail.

              That is if they guy didn’t run me over first while I risked my own life for a truck full of things that are much cheaper to replace than the squashed organs in my body (assuming the truck didn’t kill me).

              I think you’re looking for whatever excuse you can to use the gun, even if it means purposefully putting yourself in a dangerous position.

          • minjche says:

            Finally a responsible gun owner in the comments! Thank you for your insight.

        • MrEvil says:

          Rifles while providing much more power (a 30-30 is nothing to laugh at.) Just don’t do as well in close quarters as a pistol, also more risk of shooting something behind your target you don’t want shot.

          .40 S&W JHP is more what I’m talking about. I mean there’s a reason its the FBI’s handgun caliber of choice.

      • ChilisServer says:

        It might not be in states like, say…Texas. If they’re trying to steal your possessions and you can reasonably conclude that you may not be able to recover it, you may detain them with deadly force.

        I probably wouldn’t bother with the shotgun/pistol/whatever, though. Police might take it in as “evidence” even if my use was justified, and I’d hate to see the finish get scratched while it’s in temporary police custody.

        • minjche says:

          See my other comment in this same thread where I point out that I picked the law common to MOST states instead of listing all 50 definitions.

          Also, the hidden camera video clearly shows the event occurring in California, so RTFA and WTFV, and stop being annoying with your single-freaking-state laws. I believe an “UGH” is in order, as well.

    • Gulliver says:

      An intellectual giant you are. You do realize they have your new address. Holding a gun to a criminals face is really a smart thing to do. I guess you plan to never sleep again, or leave your home, since THEY KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE. I always love how powerless people try to prove how tough they are online.

  16. VOIDMunashii says:

    Call Kurtis is basically the only good thing on Channel 13′s news. One of the better stations should steal him away.

  17. JayPhat says:

    it’s California. That explains alot to me. They’re too busy worrying about someone who spilled a quart of oil in their driveway.

  18. Toolhead says:

    Damn…how do people like that sleep at night?

  19. BettyCrocker says:

    My husband used to work for a moving company. A long time ago – I wrote a brief q and a on moving for a website I was a contributor on…Moving Tips from a Mover.

    Here’s the advice from that – and it really only applies if you are having a moving company do it for you

    Q: How can I call a moving company and know that I’m getting an accurate quote?

    A: You can’t get an accurate quote over the phone. It’s just that simple.
    Everyone’s idea of an “average” apartment or house is different. There is always
    factors such as stairs, how close the moving truck can park to your front door
    and if you have, or don’t have, an elevator. The only way to really get an
    accurate quote is for someone from the company to come out and do a job
    survey.

    However, you can still protect yourself, even if no one comes out to take a
    look. Ask the company for a “do not exceed” order. By law, in California and
    other states, they are required to provide this upon request. Initially, one should
    ask for a quote and then state they’d like a “do not exceed” price. By doing this,
    the company cannot jack up the price once they get out there by saying they
    didn’t know about something – like the stairs or parking or whatever. They can
    charge you up to 10% over their do not exceed price, but most companies will
    not pursue this legally as it’s generally a small amount of money.

    By asking companies for this price, you will get around them trying to lo-ball
    each other and then jack up the price when they get out there on moving day
    and you can’t do anything about it.

    (addtional note – do not sign a blank “change order”. this will null the do not exceed. But, you must have done your job. i.e. if you say you are going to pack and they get there and you’re not packed all the way, and they have to do some of it, obviously you’ll have to sign a change order and it’ll be more money. This opens up the door to a variety of things though. Best bet – do just what you say you’ll have done – and then don’t sign a change order.)

    Q: What about the items that may break when I move?

    A: Hopefully, with everything packed properly, that won’t happen. The movers
    should take care to cover all the furniture with moving pads and shrink-wrap to
    prevent damage. (If they are packing for you. If you pack yourself, you are on your own.)
    Inevitably though, something will break. Generally, this is
    particle board style furniture that isn’t that durable. If you have valuable
    furniture, it’s really in your best interest to look at the insurance the company
    has to offer.

    (additional note – if you don’t get the insurance, you are covered for only 60cents per pound. )

    Keep in mind that there are professional companies and little Mom and Pop style
    ones. Make sure that you request that everything be padded. This will already
    be included with a professional company but a less expensive company might
    charge extra for this service. Be sure you ask so you aren’t surprised on the big
    move day.

    Q: What are some common mistakes that I can avoid?

    Don’t use grocery store produce boxes or other unstable packing material
    or you will end up with items broken.

    Don’t pack books or other heavy items in large boxes. The box will not
    support the weight and the bottom will fall out.

    Do take pictures of anything valuable so there is a record of it in proper
    condition. If there is any damage, and you have purchased insurance, it
    will be easier to prove the condition prior to the move and that the
    damage done was not there before.

    If you are packing yourself, label every single box. You’ll need more then
    what room it goes on unless you plan on opening all the boxes and
    searching. You’re much better off taking a few extra moments and writing
    Kitchen Silverware on the box so you’ll not be hunting for a spoon to stir
    your coffee the morning after the move.

    If you have pets, please vacuum furniture and floors taking care to move
    couches and chairs where, literally, a fur “carpet” may be hiding. It’s
    difficult to breathe, let alone move one’s belongings,when there is a bunch
    of hair flying around the room.

    If the movers are packing your belongings, take care to remove items you
    may not want the world to see. In plain English, the movers to not want
    to see your sex toys in the drawer next to the bed.

    You have more stuff than you think.

    Offer the movers something to drink. You don’t need to go buy a bar; just
    a simple glass of water will go a long way in improving good will. Offering
    to buy lunch for the crew will get your items moved even better.

    Go the extra mile and tip the movers. This is a service industry where a tip
    is generally expected, as when you go out to eat.

    If you do have problems, call the main office and get them resolved. The
    salesmen can usually smooth things over if it can’t be handled on site.

  20. Destra says:

    My sister had a related problem with her movers. She had a moving company load all of her stuff up in a semi for a interstate move. Once she got to her new home, the movers wanted $2,000 more. They said that her stuff weighed more than they thought and the driver had been fined at a weigh station. My sister was pissed because she had had a rep from the company estimate the weight of her things before signing the contract for the move. All together they went to a weigh station where, Surprise!, the truck wasn’t overweight.

    In this situation a police presence would not be amiss.

    • ryder28910 says:

      Police would have no bearing or influence whatsoever in a case like that. They can ask politely that things be resolved, but it’s outside their jurisdiction.

  21. NightSteel says:

    I’ve heard about this sort of thing a lot, and I’ve decided that if I ever need to move with the assistance of movers and a truck, I am going to do my darnedest to have someone else there with another car, and if someone tries to scam me, box the truck in. Want extra to unload my stuff? Fine, I want the same amount to move my car.

  22. brianw76 says:

    I was thinking the same thing, especially in the case here where they were taping. If the police won’t get involved when they steal your stuff, surely they will get involved in a hit and run if they decide to ram either car and then flee.

  23. bitplayer says:

    This is very common with cross country moves and the sub contractors movers use. They pulled this with my girlfriend. NC requires a binding contract on costs before a move and I prepared my girlfriend for this happening. She threatened to call the cops and they backed off.

  24. Nick says:

    Scary Richard Clark needs to be fired and those guys should be in jail. None of this is news though; the moving industry in this country is basically a criminal enterprise at it’s heart. I’ve experienced it first hand twice, even after having done research.

  25. homehome says:

    Now, this is the stuff consumerist should be about. what’s funny is I rarely see stuff like this on here. Two things I never do, sign a contract without reading it (I don’t care if it’s 30 pages, I’ll get my lawyer and go over it until I understand it.) Never ask the ppl you’re signing with questions, cause they can lie and if you sign the contract ur still on the hook. And never sign a blank contract. Big no-no.

  26. Duckula22 says:

    Since these guys close a business and start another one, it would be nice to have their identities shown, so we won’t accidentally hire them.

  27. Nick says:

    When I moved locally, Two Guys and a Truck was amazing.

  28. unimus says:

    This scam is very common in my city. Common enough that I decided to hire moving companies who charges by the hour. Some scammers who later got busted were running the same company under 30 different names!

  29. Not Again says:

    Doesn’t matter if you sign a contract or not with a price on it. when I moved to another state I had a mover who was first of all one month late with my things and this was national named moving company. When they finally came, they wanted to charge me another $500 for the move because of the long driveway and they were unable to pull their truck in. It wasn’t that long. I had told them of this ahead of time and they agreed it was no problem. I said no, they kept trying to get me to pay. When I told them I worked for the district attorneys office they suddenly backed down.

  30. kompeitou says:

    Things you could do to get back at them:

    1. collect lots of junk
    2. schedule pick up at some foreclosed home. have it waiting for them in boxes on driveway.
    3. have movers pick up said stuff.
    4. have them drive 100-200 miles to some other foreclosed home.
    5. when they jack up the price, tell them you wont pay… they then cart the stuff away and put it in storage.
    6. repeat step 1 thru 5. (you would have to use different people as your contact person i suppose).

    Or 5.5, when truck arrives at distant desert location home and while you are negotiating price, your partner in crime slashes all the tires on the truck. refuse to pay the increased price and then leave.

  31. OnePumpChump says:

    If they have gun this not happen

  32. LoadStar says:

    This might be a stupid question, but why hasn’t Bekins or United Van Lines filed suit against these people for copyright infringement and willful misrepresentation? I know if I went and slapped Geek Squad logos on my car, I’m going to get a call from Best Buy’s attorneys before I can even blink. These people are driving around in a truck with a Bekins logo that’s as big as a planet on it for 3 years, and the company hasn’t been able to do anything? I mean, I know they keep changing company names, but I wouldn’t think that would be enough to prevent a lawsuit.

  33. Hi_Hello says:

    Can you call your back to decline check number 145. Use check 145 to pay the mover?

    I dunno. I dont trust other ppl to move myself. Ocd-ish.

    • Mooneyes says:

      Usually I’ve had to pay cash when moving. Definately the movers I hired several times which did a good job I had to pay cash. I had one mover be very threatening to me. I was a little scared for awhile after that.

    • Sian says:

      Yeah, movers won’t take a check. Cash or Cashier’s Check.

      Funny story, the movers we hired, the truck up went New York after dropping our stuff off and got burglarized. My cashier’s check, along with that for at least 8 other clients got stolen. That was a pain to sort out. The bank branch didn’t even know how to deal with it.

  34. sea0tter12 says:

    I’d write them a check, get my stuff, then stop payment on the check and sort it out from there.

    • Gulliver says:

      You do realize that when they take you to court for that, YOU will be held responsible? Writing the check will be the only proof they need. It will be theft of service on your part. You will lose the lawsuit. This is the WORST idea.

      • mmeetoilenoir lurktastique says:

        Nope. Actually, he’s perfectly right to do that. It would be akin to getting a chargeback. Plus, it’s highly unlikely that the moving company is going to want to pay for court. Remember, the plaintiff has to pay up front to sue, and it can take a long time to get the money back, even if they win. So, it’s in the company’s best interest to work something out.

        Also remember that the moving company would have to explain themselves in court, as well. They don’t want to be on record as being shady, and a jury (which you can have in small claims) would probably side with the defendant. It’s too chancy to go to court with this sort of stuff.

        • Gulliver says:

          Not true at all. The moving company hands over the contract, end of story. You would need to prove 1. your quote was for a specified amount. or 2. they did not deliver the service at the agreed upon price. The judge will ask for a copy of the contract. The movers will show the blank contract with no price. The fact that you gave them a check for the amount the movers claim will be proof AGAINST you. The simple question will be, why did you write a check for an amount, and then stop payment. Stop payment on a check is NOT equal to a charge back in any legal way. You are stupid if you think this will work. Two, the movers are under no obligation to accept a check, or credit cards or anything else. They can say WE WANT CASH ONLY.
          You can NOT have a jury in small claims in the vast majority of the states. The BUSINESS is not obligated to put it in small claims court either.

  35. gman863 says:

    If you are planning a move, call reputable companies culled from the BBB or Angie’s List for estimates.

    On a larger move, major companies can send a rep to your home and give you an in-person estimate (including especially fragile or oversized items like pianos, artwork, motorcycles, etc).
    If the rep comes to your home, ask if the company offers a “binding estimate” – a fixed price that cannot be raised by the moving company. Although a binding estimate may be a bit higer than a non-binding one, you have a legally binding agreement the price cannot be raised.

    Another option is to rent a U-Haul and schedule contract labor through them for loading and/or unloading. When I moved to Houston, I had plenty of friends to help me load but nobody in Texas to help unload. The labor is a set per-hour rate. Compared to using a typical moving company, this saved me over $1000.

  36. arizonaadam says:

    Horrible investigative reporting. They need to get Chris Hansen on this one.

    • gman863 says:

      Wayne Dolcifino of “13 Undercover” (ABC 13 KTRK, Houston) did this story almost a year ago, and much better.

      Wayne is excellent. Expecially since he has both looks and personality that is a cross between Danny DiVito and a pit bull. If he shows up at someone’s business with a camera, the owner usually has to duck out long enough to change his underwear. (g)

  37. mr cloudy says:

    Should have slashed their tires before they took your stuff!

  38. jwissick says:

    If the CPUC won’t act (and they are not elected). And the police won’t act.

    Then it must fall to the people to act. These trucks should be disabled permanently (think the cars for cash engine killing solution).

  39. bvita says:

    I see a lot of dramatic solutions listed (slash tires, pull guns, etc.). A simpler and more legal solution that I’ve used is to block their vehicle in with yours and call the cops.

  40. majortom1981 says:

    all the things they say on how to stop this in the first place seem like common sense.

    This si why when i moved into my condo from my appt i used a big name company . yes it might be expensive but less of a chance of them doing exactly what this article stated.

    When they arrived in my appt before they even moved anything I had to sign like 15 minutes of paperwork and had to read some papers like my rights and stuff.

    I would think any company who just comes in and starts moving is fake. They also did have somebody come to my house to see what I was moving.

    the company i used was men on the move. Very professional. Now that i see all the fake companies out there i appreciate the 15 mintues of paperwork that i had to sign.

  41. Bog says:

    So – You block them from leaving. Park vehicles in front of the truck and behind it. Also have your own crew (friends) ready to unload the truck if the movers won’t.

    Since you know which storage unit your stuff is in – (just get a warrant if possible) and remove it.

  42. Alan_Schezar says:

    How about paying by credit card and doing a chargeback?

  43. Saltillopunk says:

    I was so happy with the service I received from a national chain for a multi-state move that I used them for a local move of some of my bigger furniture. Big mistake on my part for being so trusting. While they didn’t pull this scam, they tried to scam me none the less. My fault for not noticing the start and stop times were not logged on any of the papers I signed. I get a bill for a job with a start of 8 AM, with an end of 1 PM (5 hours). In truth they arrived and started at 9 AM and were done and out the door by 12 Noon. The original estimate was for 4 hours. Right now I am working with the agent to get the paperwork fixed to reflect the true length of the job and to credit me for the hour difference between his estimate (paid for up front) and actual. Learn from my mistake. Make sure the times are on the papers when you sign them. And get multiple bids even if you are happy with a company’s prior performance.

  44. pygmalion jenkins says:

    something similar happened to me once. instead of running off with my stuff, the movers loaded it up in their truck, then hid instead of meeting us the storage shed as planned.

    the shed was near my place, and they already knew where it was located. but they never showed.

    my mom went to find them after a while, and they were in the back of my apt complex, instead of right near the exit gate, which was incidentally where my apt was (and where they had loaded my stuff).

    the main guy took the offensive, and started yelling that we were wasting his time. long story short, we ended up paying for about an extra hour, which wasn’t cheap as there were 3 movers who had to be paid.

  45. suez says:

    This happened to a friend of mine when she moved from San Diego to northern VA about 8 years ago. They held her stuff captive for over a month! It’s nothing new and they should be arrested for this sort of thing, end of story.

  46. DanKelley98 says:

    Those on the California Public Utilities Commission should resign. That said, the police should be involved with this happens as its theft, pure and simple.

  47. MrEvil says:

    As a serious and legitimate solution to this problem, I reccommend having the movers back their truck into a parking space or driveway and then blocking them in with your own vehicle so they cannot move their truck without you moving your vehicle. Just make up some bullshit excuse about HOA or neighborhood ordinance or road maintainance. I mean they’re not going anywhere until the job is done and moving your vehicle will take but a moment.

    If they try to force their way out, get back into your car and they’ll have all manner of wonderful charges coming their way.

  48. cortana says:

    At least I have a friend who’s a DOT inspector… I could just call him and he’d come over and put their truck Out of Service(since i guarantee it won’t pass a level 1 inspection). Then I’ll get my own stuff off of it while the truck can’t move. If they move it, you call the DOT or state police and they’ll snatch that truck up instantly, since the fines on that are massive.

  49. PupJet says:

    Wow…how about people actually doing research before hiring a company? Instead of just hiring blindly, why not actually ask for references and checking various sites (such as the BBB) instead? It makes the problem less of such and back up any claims. Also makes for good not giving an agreement over the phone. I would want to sign the paperwork.

    I don’t care if they get impatient while I read through it, hell, they get paid either way. If they touch my stuff before that paperwork is signed, then they are attempting to steal my items and as such, since they would be on my property, are going to be harmed.

  50. AustinTXProgrammer says:

    When we moved we received glowing reviews of a local company from several friends (all connected, I have no idea who went first). They were less than half of the next quote…

    The quote would have scared us away if not for the referral. They were great. It took longer than they thought and they acted like we were over tipping when we adjusted accordingly (to about half the next bid).

    They did come to our house for the quote. They were highly recommended. So low price doesn’t have to be a show stopper (they rent a U-Haul for every move and are still cheaper. I don’t get it).

  51. Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

    My wife and I were victims of this very same thing when we moved from South Florida back to NY. They took us for an extra $4000 and yes we could have maybe sued them etc. But, when your wife is 8 months prego and you are in your car just leaving on the long trip to your new home and get a phone call saying we will not give your stuff unless you cough up the extra money. I threatened the guy with calling the cops, calling my lawyer, etc…he called me on it and said fine…I’ll meet you at the court house. Long story short….we went in person….scary part of South Florida…they were all Russian and were carrying side arms.

    I would recommend either sell all your crap before you move and only take the family jewels and irreplaceable garb with you or find a very “trustworthy” moving company…if there is one.

    Oh yeah, just so you all know….yes I blame our great U.S.A government for this one.

    Currently moving companies are overseen by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), part of the Federal Department of Transportation (DOT). At last count the FMCSA had only nine investigators to handle all of the thousands of complaints against moving companies each year. What does that mean for consumers? It means this:

    * Most complaints against movers are overlooked and the consumer becomes a statistic while no action is ever taken against the moving company.
    * When Congress dissolved the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) in 1995, they also removed the authority from the FMCSA to step in on a consumer’s behalf if they are taken advantage of by a moving company. In other words, they don’t have the authority to help you even if they want to.
    * If an investigation does occur, it takes months if not years for the FMCSA to, yes, get this… Fine the moving company.
    * The scam moving companies get away with not paying the fines and if they did, the consumers don’t see a dime of their money back. The money from the moving company’s fines go to pay for highway improvements!

    taken from: http://www.movingscam.com/

  52. vaguelyobscene says:

    Wow. I have never seen such a massive collection of Internet Tough Guys.

  53. SamuraiMarine says:

    I guess my wife and I were lucky. We went with a locally run mover and they did one hell of a job, packed up the house, moved it and unpacked it in less than four hours. They even set up our furniture for us in the rooms it belonged it. Total bill was about $350. It was a couple days before Christmas, so we gave them a box of cookies and $100 each for a tip.

    A few years later I met the owner at a function and told him about our experience. He said… “Yeah… I heard about you two.” Apparently they went back to the shop and shared the cookies and divided the $200 among the rest of the people working that day.

    I know that this is not exactly on topic, but I thought I would share a positive story to add to all the bad ones.