Thieves Take Rent Checks from Property Management Company - 8 News NOW

Thieves Take Rent Checks from Property Management Company

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Surveillance video of drop box thieves Surveillance video of drop box thieves

LAS VEGAS -- Dozens of people who left their rent checks in the drop box of a property management company had their checks stolen, before they were cashed.

Avalon Realty and Oaktree Management say thieves took between $20,000 and $30,000 in checks.

The two thieves were caught on tape fishing checks out of the company's drop box. The next night, the camera caught another man doing the same thing.

One of those checks belonged to 26-year-old Cameron Hasse. He found out about the burglary when he received a call from his rental agency. He immediately called to cancel the check.

Laura Barberini with Avalon Realty worries about the information the thieves were able to get.

"Their bank information is out there now, their name, address. Can identity theft be taken? We don't know," Barberini said.

According to Barberini, thieves have stolen from the drop box at least four times in the past two and a half years. She has purchased more lighting, cameras and a drop box that is more difficult to break in to, but those measures have not stopped criminals.

"Everyone is upset. Owners didn't get their money on time. Tenants said they paid their rent," Barberini said.

Few people use checks to make payments, but the company has kept the drop box open for people's convenience.

Now, payments for the company's 400 renters are going online, but Metro Police say the damage could already be done.

"Basically, what they do is they attempt to remove the existing ink off the check. At that point, what they have is a valid account number. They then forge the checks and attempt to cash them at other locations," Metro Police officer Jose Hernandez said.

Worst of all, Avalon Realty says renters still owe rent, even if their check were stolen and cashed.

Police recommend victims change their account number immediately and file a police report about what personal information was on their checks.

Anyone with information about the thefts is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 385-5555.

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