Local pawn shops crack down on stolen property with online syste - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Local pawn shops crack down on stolen property with online system

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KENNEWICK, WA. -- Many of you might think that pawn shops would be a good place for criminals to sell stolen items. But that's not always the case, especially locally. 

As the weather warms up, burglars tend to get more active. But one pawn shops says it's not a good idea to try to sell those items in our area. That's because pawn shops in our area have a system in which every customer has their picture taken as well as a picture of their items and this system has helped solve several crimes.

Well it's not always flattering but it is effective according to pawn shop owner Randy Harris. Randy says no matter how much merchandise they're selling, every customer is put into their system.

"Whether it's 5 dollars of 500 we do the same," Harris said. "The same due diligence."

It's called LeadsOnline. The software is connected directly with the Kennewick and Richland Police Departments to help solve crimes. Randy has seen it work firsthand. 

"This was the gentlemen that sold me some stolen property out of Walla Walla County," Randy said. "He sold stolen property here in Tri-Cities, up in Yakima and Ellensburg. And our LeadsOnline program was very beneficial to help solve this crime."

That guy, named Perry Ashelman, was just sentenced to over 12-years in Walla Walla, thanks in part to info on the Leads system. Randy helped push local law enforcement and business owners to connect with the program but he's not stopping there. 

"One of the things I've been lobbying for is a no pawn list," Harris said. "They have that for scrap metal buyers. We don't have that for personal property."

His goal is to make sure stolen property never makes it into his hands. 

"We're a retail outlet," Randy said. "We have several employees, we just want to run a nice business and support a few folks and live happily ever after."

That way you can head down to Ace for things like a stuffed mountain lion and take it home confident it wasn't taken illegally. 
 

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