Yakima, WA - What's working to save taxpayer money and a great place to shop for bargains?
There's a website that's auctioning off stolen property at discount prices.
Local law enforcement officials say it's totally legal and doing them a big favor.
You name it. They have it...
You can find pretty much everything under the sun at ‘propertyroom.com.'
Or, more specifically anything a thief might be interested in stealing; from jewelry to clothes, computers to fancy tech gadgets, even cars and real estate.
And the prices can be downright steals.
"Well, right now what are looking at is small computer equipment and a little bit of costume jewelry," says Chief Dave Thompson of the Yakima Sheriff's Office, referencing some of the latest items that they will be auctioning off on the website.
"We looked at how it was all set up, how they managed the sale of the property and it was pretty good stuff," says Thompson, "It eliminated the additional steps that we had to go through to prepare items for auction, to publish for an auction, to actually, physically handle the auction, or hire a company to do that for us."
It also saves valuable storage space, which can be used for more important things like evidence in criminal cases.
The Yakima Sheriff's Office has been using the site for five years now and Thompson says they have saved several thousand dollars in the process.
But he wanted to make it very clear - they are only selling off unclaimed stolen property.
"We make every effort when we bring property in that we try and find to find out if we can an owner for the property."
Propertyroom.com was started by retired police officers and they also have what they call a 'Steal it-back' registry where you can look for anything that could possibly belong to you.