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Thread: Has anyone ever been robbed? How did you recover?

  1. #1
    ServBot (Level 11) WiseSalesman's Avatar
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    Default Has anyone ever been robbed? How did you recover?

    Hey guys. I haven't posted here in a long, long time. I'm really glad to see things are still going strong. I know this is a long read - sorry. Thank in advance to everyone who takes the time.

    I started visiting Digital Press 15 years ago (jesus) shorty after I'd graduated high school and started college. It was 2002 and the world was still pretty oblivious to game collecting. I was finding NES games for a quarter at the salvation army, we hadn't been mentioned in any major media yet (Game Informer or wherever we got our first mention?) and I was living in Cleveland, OH. I was just a kid really, 19 years old, trying too hard to be cool on the internet, and excited to explore collecting the games I'd grown up with. I loved this place, the people and the hobby - the excitement of getting a good deal or tracking down a grail, the nostalgia of rediscovering old titles and fun of playing hidden gems I'd missed.

    Life takes you strange places. Mine took me to a couple of different states, eventually landing me in NYC. I went through some hard times, and money grew tighter, so I back-burnered my hobby, but I carried my collection with me. I always figured that when I settled down and bought a place, I'd take it up again, and I'd check in here from time to time, posting when I had a question, and just lurking when I didn't - until five years ago.

    Five years ago, I was living in Brooklyn, thanks in no small part to some friends with big hearts who had given me a place to stay rent-free while I was going through extremely hard time. They got me on my feet. It was exciting, the direction my life had taken, and I was extremely grateful, and eager to pay that forward. I was working as a manager of a local cafe, and one of my employees - who I considered a friend - had to quit to go home and stay with his mother who was undergoing treatment for cancer. He was going to lose his lease. Was there any chance, he asked, that I might be able to put him up for a couple of weeks when he got back to town? I told him yes, of course. My couch was his. This man's name was Dakota. And yeah, I'm using his real name, because fuck him, but I'll at least do the courtesy of not using his last name.

    He stayed with me and my roommates for nearly a month, until we finally had to ask him to leave. He'd overstayed the time we'd allotted, and there'd been some weirdness as well. Food had gone missing that belonged to my roommates. Keep in mind, he never asked for food. He'd stained our floor with grease form his bike and covered it up instead of trying to clean it. I believed (but couldn't be sure) that a small amount of money had gone missing from my wallet. He asked me to loan him $1000; weirded out by his behavior, I declined. If you read the thread title, I'm sure you know where this is going.

    A month or two after he moved out, I went looking for a game in my SNES collection - I no longer remember which - and I couldn't find it. Odd, but not unheard of. I can be pretty scatterbrained and I'm not the most organized person. I went looking for a different game. That was gone too. That was when I twigged something was up.

    Long story short, he cleaned out every well-known, high-profile game I owned - and a few that belonged to my roommates. I know it was him because of the specificity of the knowledge - he had a player's eye, not a collector's eye. So, he took everything by Square, for instance, but left other high-priced titles like Actraiser, Soul Blazer and Purikura Daisakusen which would have gone for as much or more. Original pressing Silent Hill? Gone. Every Zelda game? Gone. My childhood saves of Chrono Trigger and Secret of Mana I went through with my now-dead best friend? All gone. He took me for probably a thousand dollars or more (prices at the time, anyway) but more than that, he stole my childhood memories and destroyed my sense of trust. I'm paranoid all the time now, whenever we have guests, even people I know well. Because I thought I knew HIM well. And I basically stopped buying games. I've been contemplating selling what's left of my skeletonized collection - just moving entirely to emulators. It's too hard to face starting over, but I'm having trouble letting go of what little is left.

    He occasionally tries to add me on social media. Maybe he wants to apologize, or maybe he wants to keep pretending he doesn't know what he did and try to take advantage of me even more. I don't know. I just block him. I can't imagine I want anything to do with him, other than to possibly rearrange his face. I did reach out to our mutual co-workers when I found out and warned them. He'd been shady to a couple of them, too. If I'd had any shred of doubt it was him prior to that, it was quashed.

    I'm sorry this has gotten so long. Honestly, it's hard for me to talk about, and most people don't understand. But I feel like people from this community will know where I'm coming from and can share this a little with me. I just want to get it off my chest.

    And I'm curious - has anyone had this happen? How did you react? Did you get back on the horse - start rebuilding? Or did you give up? Becuase I do miss it, but it's hard for me to contemplate starting over when I've been hurt this bad by someone I knew.

    Thanks for reading.
    Last edited by WiseSalesman; 05-11-2017 at 06:20 PM.

  2. #2
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    I feel for you. Seriously, I've got that gut-punch feeling after reading what happened. F*ck that guy. The only thing I'd want to hear from him is "I've got your games and I'll bring back to you right away." I'd be tempted to tell him that, too, and also that'd I'd ignore anything else he ever says.

    If it were me, I'd sell the rest and do emulators or a flash cart to play. You won't be bogged down and constantly reminded of what happened by the physical collection. Besides, the pricing on so much of what you lost is just so high now. I don't know if you have a family or what, but I do, and I'd have a really hard time justifying those purchases to myself with college and retirement to save for. If you were into a more recent system, it might not be a bad idea to focus on one of those; Wii, PS3, xbox, or 360 might be good choices right now. Gamecube maybe, but some of those games are already up.

    Only other option for me would be to ask for the games as gifts, and expect just that for bdays and xmas for many years. But I have to tell you, I have my original gameboy and games still, while I gave away my NES and games, and the replacement NES games just aren't the same. Don't get me wrong, I love my collection, but having the actual carts you played as a kid is pretty special.

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    Key (Level 9) mailman187666's Avatar
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    When I was younger, I had just gotten a game gear and 32X system for my Genesis. I lived in a duplex at the time and my mother was dating the man who lived next door. Well the guy next door lived there with his younger brother as well. The younger brother came in by climbing out of his window, going across part of the roof and into our window when nobody was home. I came home one day and the 32x was no longer in the genesis, my game gear was gone, and there were a few other things that had gone missing. Luckily the guy my mother was dating next door went into his younger brother's room and found it all. I was sooooo relieved.

    There is a whole backstory when it came to the younger brother where our family eventually forgave him and he was good for years and years. Eventually his true colors shined through and I had to do away with him all together. He is technically family now because my mother and his brother have been together all this time. Even his brother doesn't bother with him anymore. It's one of those "fool me once, shame on you" kind of situations with him that once being fooled so many times, you don't want that person around anymore because you know what is eventually going to happen.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cornelius View Post
    The only thing I'd want to hear from him is "I've got your games and I'll bring back to you right away." I'd be tempted to tell him that, too, and also that'd I'd ignore anything else he ever says.
    I'd antagonize that fucker and tell him to die in a fire.

    And oh, I got robbery/thief stories

    On the school bus decades ago, a kid we sometimes hung out with had all the Dinobots or whatever they were called. He wanted to trade my Starscream jet for one of his dinobots. The day I brought it on the bus he said he forgot the Dinobot, but if I rode over to his house later he would give it to me. When I rode over there, no answer... that continued day after day. He stopped riding the bus at some point and then disappeared. I think he had like a split family and probably wen to live with his dad. IDK what else was going on, but we wondered if he disappeared simply because he wanted to steal that transformers jet so badly.

    Around the same time-frame This dude Eddie Price was trying to amass a Star Wars collection. He offered to buy my Snowspeeder and Probot set. He lived right down the street and we all rode bikes and hung out with him regularly. For some reason I ended up letting him take the Star Wars stuff on his word that he'd pay me later. Just like the other guy, Eddie disappeared. (he went to the vo-tech school so we didn't see him in school anyway) He still lived there for awhile but he just stopped coming out and his parents would say he wasn't home or wouldn't answer the door when we went looking for our money (he stole Star Wars stuff from other people in the neighborhood too).
    (Many years later, like when he was 18, he drove down the street and stopped to talk to the old crew and to show off and try to sell us his custom car stereo services ...I asked him for my money then, and he was startled or shocked and asssured that he would come by the next day with the money - that was the last time we ever saw Eddie)

    Then there was Doug Merrit. I had an estes Space Shuttle and transport plane model that I had nicely assembled. Doug was an avid model maker too. He was better than I with painting and he conned me into letting him paint my space shuttle model etc.. I let him take it, and I never saw it again.
    I'd periodically saw him and asked him about it. I think at one point we were going to have a fist fight about it.

    In Philadelphia one 4th of July, a friend and I were walking back from a pizza shop and two kids (like 12 years old) came riding their bikes up the sidewalk. They threw the bikes down in front of us (I was thinking they were "fronting" because we were in their way) the one kid just swung at me and clocked me in the face, at the same instant hands went into my pockets. I slid my hands in my pockets and grabbed the other hands - the one kid had his hand on my wallet but I held it there and didn't let him take it. I was thinking I was going to get stabbed or shot in the back. Meanwhile the other kid just pummeled my face until I fell backward into a pile of garbage bags along the curb. The friend I was with had run down the street to get help, but he was ringing the wrong doorbell and not the one where our friend's lived. By the time I got my bearings the kids were on their bikes riding away - they didn't get my wallet. I had a nice black eye for while after that one.

    During a cross country trip I stopped in Chicago and was at the Underground Wonderbar, one of the homeless outfront was like a recreational drug runner for the clientele at the jazz bar. I was trying ot get some weed for the remainder of the trip and the staff said that guy would hook it up. I didn't trust giving him my cash and insisted on going with him.... long story... like teaching me the proper gang handshake and how to behave... I actually got herded into a highrise housing project by a group of 12-15 guys, went through my stuff, were all impressed that I had credit cards, also were curious that I had a camera, they couldn't believe I was from Pennsylvania. I was sure I was going to get shot in the head and left there. The main dude just took all my cash, put my stuff back in my backpack and told me to get out of there.

    Here's a housemate robbery story: a job had transferred me to manage their new shop. This town had terrible rental market, it was hell getting a suitable place to live, for the longest time I was commuting. Eventually as production at the shop ramped up, we hired a new guy, it was odd that he was from Pittsburgh, he said he moved to York because his sister lived there. This guy and I became friends and we found a big house for rent, he then said he had a buddy named Jay who also needed place to live, so Jay, Andy, and I signed on to the lease. Only about 6 weeks in that new place thins started getting weird. Jay and Andy were really keeping to themselves unlike before. Andy was missing work and would say it was because of staying with his girlfriend and not having transportation or something... not long after Andy went complete MIA, his girlfriend (a Russian slave who worked at a local diner - all Russian human trafficking staff) called work looking for him etc... Jay said he didn't know where he was. I was really worried and a little scared about what may have happened. (this was over the course of a few days)... one evening I come home and something is off in my bedroom, I had to do a double take.. my slim Playstation and ASCii FT pads were gone, along with a stack of games. It was a day or two before Jay was around again, and when I ask him he happily is like "Yeah, I borrowed them to play over at my friend's house" like. what?!!! I'm a big dude and Jay was a scrawny turd. I let him know they needed to be back here the next day. Of course they weren't.
    Somewhere in this timeline Andy called in to work. He was in jail. Unbeknownst to me he had been on probation for drug violations... he had met Jay in rehab, living with Jay they both got back to using heroin, Andy knowing he had a problem went to his probation officer asking for help. Unknown to Andy, they have a zero tolerance policy, so they threw him back in jail right then and there. So now I was faced with the situation that I'd signed a lease with two heroin addicts!
    When I called the police to file a report on Jay, the officer was just like "What are you doing living with heroin addicts?" she was condescending at my insistence that I didn't know. She basically said it wasn't theft because he was my room mate, and I had told here that he initially said he borrowed them. I persisted and a report was taken. Days later I got a call from Jay's dad telling me Jay was in jail in a town like 60 miles away. So I called York police and let them know the thief was already in jail elsewhere.. the police were just like don't bother us.
    I had to break the lease on that home, the property manager changed the locks immediately even though we'd paid through the end of that months, most of the furniture and kitchenware was then stolen or disposed of by the property manager. I was also threatened with legal letters that I'd be taken to court for the remainder of the lease money... thankfully that never happened. What a nightmare.

    More recently, had my car looted, two bikes have been stolen from my current residence, my girlfriends bike was stolen from her secure parking garage.

    There's plenty of shitty people out there.

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    I remember a childhood friend came over to visit one summer day. I think we were in elementary school at this point in time.

    Garbage Pail Kids were hot at the time and I was showing him my collection. We hung out, played video games, and a bit later, he had to go. Well, as we were leaving my room, I noticed my stack of GPK cards were gone. Hmm. As we got outside (he had walked over to my house), I noticed he had a squarish lump in one of his socks, right on his calf (long tube sock).

    Big mistake one. Big mistake two? He was wearing those rubber neon shoe laces, which I asked to see. He foolishly undid one and handed it to me. I calmly fashioned it into a lash and proceeded to whip his legs (he wore shorts) in which he fell to the ground screaming.

    "ARRRGH!! You just wanted to hurt me!" I was puzzled by that, but I was more puzzled that he thought he could walk out with a big stack of trading cards without me noticing.

    "Give the cards back and I'll stop!" I told him.

    He quickly pulled the cards out of his sock and apologized profusely. "I'm sorry! I was only joking!"

    I wasn't having any of it. I had tossed the shoe laces back to him, telling him that he better not steal from me again and to leave.

    I stopped hanging out with him shortly after that.

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    Peach (Level 3) Koa Zo's Avatar
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    Nice Damaramu! Now that's the way you handle it.
    In the good old days when boys could be men, and men were not boys, you whipped someones ass for disrespecting you.
    Now-a-days that's just an invite for the legal industry to make a customer out of you.

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    Why didn't you confront him like a man?

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    Quote Originally Posted by FieryReign View Post
    Why didn't you confront him like a man?
    Be cool. He's got his reasons. There's no need to question them.

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    Insert Coin (Level 0) Jehusephat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FieryReign View Post
    What the hell you mean, "be cool"? It's a perfectly fine question. Go ahead with that bullshit. You ain't never even around this fucking forum. Pass it off to someone who cares, if you don't give a fuck anymore.
    I care. He said "be cool," which means "don't act like a massive dick in a public place." This whole thread will probably be derailed by your tantrum, and I'll miss out on some interesting stories because you weren't able to keep a level head. If that's what you feel like you're entitled to do because you're "around," you're essentially sabotaging this forum's ability to function as a place for people to effectively share information about a common interest in order to keep people who don't approve of your childish behavior away. This isn't Highlander. You don't win anything for being the last one here.
    Last edited by Jehusephat; 05-22-2017 at 04:50 AM.

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    When I was in jr high, the school really fucked up locker assignments, and flat out didn't have enough, so a few of use just had to use a (not locking) cabinet in a classroom along with hooks for our coats/bags (like in elementary, the whole building was a rehabbed elementary being reused).

    I lent the original Wizards and Warriors cart to my best friend for a while, and he gave it back to me at school. Not having a locker, I just put it in my bag. Apparently some asshole went through our bags when he had class in there, because when I got home the game was gone. Never saw it again, and that's my my W&W copy is complete -- except for the cart. After that I used a padlock on my bag...

    Of course they didn't learn, and the next year, half the year we didn't have lockers at all (new building) and they expected us to keep our stuff in desks in one of the classrooms. Yeah right. They finally got lockers about 3/4th of the way through the year.

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    Insert Coin (Level 0) Zi's Avatar
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    scumbags broke into my house a few years back. my pregnant wife and 2 year old daughter came home and found the place trashed. they took thousands in jewerly and computers. It was horrible. thankfully, no one was home, which the police suspected was the robber's plan. I lost 2 albums (about 75% complete) and will literally never recover that artistic work. insurance paid out, but only up to x amount, so 5k did not get us the 13k lost in jewelry, etc.

    how do you recover? you really can't. We've since moved, and always take measures to secure the house (even though the robbers got in through the bathroom beating our security measures). I can never get that work back and there's always a little part of me that realizes you can never really stop something like that. in and out in less than 5 mins. even with an alarm blaring, they can grab n go.

    I'm sorry you were wronged and hope that you and those you love are safe.
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