New York Man Allegedly Fakes Home Depot Barcodes and Steals $10,000 in Tools
This isn't a new scam, but it went so well that the guy who allegedly did it...did it 28 more times until he was caught.
New York State Troopers arrested 37-year-old Jeffrey Gordon and charged him with Grand Larceny and Petit Larceny according to WWNY-TV. His thefts at Home Depot stores in DeWitt, Camillus, Clay, Cicero, Auburn, and Watertown totaled roughly $10,000. Most of the alleged thefts were tools, but he didn't actually steal the actual tool.
So, how did he allegedly steal from Home Depot? He made his own bar codes. Gordon apparently copied the barcodes from elsewhere where an item was priced lower and then created labels at home that he stuck on the higher-priced items before going through checkout. For example, he would copy the bar code on a box of lightbulbs priced at $9.99. Then he would go home and make a fake bar code and go back to the store and stick that fake barcode on a Dewalt Drill that should cost $129.99. He would go through the self-checkout so a cashier wouldn't question the purchase and then out the door he would go, allegedly "stealing" $120 on the Dewalt Drill.
It's actually a pretty simple scam and one that is made easier by self-checkouts. I'm actually surprised that it doesn't happen more. Maybe thefts like this could cause retailers to rethink all the self check out lanes they have now.
According to police, the thefts went on from November 2020 to February 2021.