CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Fla. - A program aimed at stopping crooks from making fast cash at pawn shops is working!
A two-year team effort between Charlotte County deputies and store owners is leading to quicker arrests.
"Pople get in a pinch, they need some help, and that's what we're here for... look around we've got a little bit of everything here," says rob Porter with The King's Pawn in Eglewood.
"Is a highly regulated industry," he adds.
That's helping them and their honest customers do a good business. Detectives with the Charlotte County Intelligence Unit say, they deal with crimes involving pawned stolen property almost daily.
"I think it's the reporting that the shops have now. We now have all the data handy to the Sheriff's Office and Police Departments," says Sgt. Christopher Maler.
Detectives can track the merchandise, and the crooks down more quickly than just two years ago thanks to the 'Pawn Finder' database.
"Everything that we purchase or pawn for someone we have to enter them into the Sheriff's website within 24 hours, the serial number, the brand, the description, the size, length, weight," Porter says.
"We can access it immediately, where in the past they had to send just written copies, it's much easier for us to catch up on trends," says Detective Matthew Wagner.
Pawn Detective Matthew Wagner says some trends they generally see with stolen items is they're pawned within 24 hours. And even if they try to sell it outside of the Charlotte County, it won't go under the radar.
"Our database has got a wide network so we'll pick up on it no matter where it's sold... That's just crooks trying to outthink us," Detectove Wagner adds.
Pawn shops also have to hold on to the items they purchase for 30 days before doing anything with them. That gives detectives time to research it if they get a report of stolen property.