MyFox, Detroit, reported on June 8, 2015, that there is a new threat to the public perpetrated by thieves who steal the gas right out of a customer’s tank while still standing at the pump.
The public has been made aware of credit card thieves who have been stealing from customers at the pump and now they have discovered another way to break the law and leave your tank empty.
MyFox reports Mike Daher as saying, “In 30 years of running a gas station in metro Detroit, I have never heard of this one.” He continued by saying, “They will figure out a way to scam,” he said. That’s all they got; they have time to figure out how to scam you, scam me.”
The trick to this scam is keeping the intended victim distracted while the thief is actually receiving the gas that the victim thinks in going into their tank.
This scam is particularly easy in a crowded line up at the pumps. The thief will already be at the pump on the opposite side and will have switched the two nozzles. Then all he has to do is to wait for his prey.
The unsuspecting customer drives up – puts the nozzle from the other side in his/her vehicle while the thief has the nozzle pumping gas into their tank.
The sleight of hand is much like that of a magician – distraction. By the time the customer figures out there was no gas pumped into their vehicle, the thief is long gone.
The prevention and remedy to foil the thief is to make sure that the hose you are using is actually attached to your pump. If not, casually get their tag number, go inside and report it to the manager.
This report is basically a warning since this has only been reported in California, but what happens there slowly comes across the nation.
And articles like this could only serve to instruct other thieves on the method, but hopefully making the public aware also will help prevent this type of robbery.
Another crime taking place at gas stations is what is called “sliders!” While the customer is pumping gas, another car drives up, the passenger hops out and opens the opposite side of the customer’s vehicle stealing purses or laptops, or even cell phones. Follow this link for a video of such a crime in progress.
Vigilance is paramount today when in shopping centers, movies, and even at the gas station. Always be aware of your surroundings. Always keep your passenger-side door locked. Never put your purse on top of your car while pumping gas. If possible travel in pairs.
Pretty soon, the law abiding public will have no privacy as it may require more and more cameras to catch lawbreakers.