Bizarre stories seldom stop flooding out of Florida and this one is no exception. When one thinks of theFlorida Keys images of sun, sand, and an emerald archipelago come to mind… which is why this tale of a truck driver-looking individual (who rocks a seriously creepy grin in his mugshot) stealing a bag of sex toys from his employer’s storage unit is so jarring. We don’t know what it is about storage units that attract the most bone-headed robbers, but they seem to do everything from locking themselves in the units they’ve broken into to storing their stolen goods at the SAME facility they were taken from. Truly, it may be said that storage facilities bring out the worst in America’s absent-minded crooks. The sex toy thief, Mitchell Tice, was sold out by his own girlfriend.. one Ms. Pshantel Scott. Ms. Scott recalls that before Tice was apprehended by police he had come home and “had place a bag of dildos under their bed.” According to Scott, Tice blatantly admitted to her that the bag of sex toys had come from his employer, and more specifically from his locked trailer. The robber, who perhaps could have earned the name ‘Robin Wood’, also stole two laptops and a wig from his employers storage locker. Tice was inevitably arrested, charged with two misdemeanor counts and one count of felony burglary and is being held at county jail until his $4,000 bond can be paid. The most awkward element of this story is the fact that Tice’s employer and his wife, restaurant owners, were just sitting on a treasure trove of sex toys. Where would they sell these toys? Pleasure Parties? Or were they hoarding them in case of a nuclear fallout? We at RentAStorageLocker only hope that the stolen toys that Tice got away with were brand new and not second-hand. This brings up an interesting question about purchasing storage units or anything second hand… at what point does one man’s trash stay one man’s trash? Or will people find value in any old or used object regardless of how intimately said object was employed previously. Maybe we should just chalk this one up to Florida.
Storage units serve so many purposes. Some function as offices in this tough economic climate, others as rec rooms for men who need an escape from their wives & kids, and every now and then the quiet darkness of a storage unit is transformed into a tomb. In this case, a storage unit in Portland, Oregon was used for its namesake purpose: storage. However in this instance the items being stored were $20′s, $50′s and $100 dollar bills amounting to over $1,000,000. The unit was being used as a vault for money procured by one Bobby Thompson, a Navy Veteran and alleged con artist. Authorities claim Thompson procured the million-plus dollars as part of a faux charity operation entitled “U.S. Navy Veterans Association” in Tampa, FL. Not content to merely be a philanderer, Thompson also maintained several stolen identities and their assorted paperwork (including birth certificates). Much evidence of which was located in the same storage unit. Thompson was apprehended in a Boston Bar after a six-month long search by authorities, including the U.S. Marshals Service and Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation. One of Thompson’s three wallets held a license for one “Alan Lacy”, which quickly led authorities to the storage unit bearing the incriminating evidence as well as the exorbitant amount of cash. The scariest element of the whole story? Bobby Thompson isn’t this criminals real name, and his true identity remains unknown!
In this day and age, news stories related to the Self-Storage industry are generally macabre and crime-ridden. Many criminals see storage facilities as the perfect place to store stolen good, drugs, cash, weapons, child pornography and even bodies. The upside of encountering these reports, however, is that the culprits are being apprehended and charged for their crimes. Self-Storage companies often boast about the security of their facilities, often displaying the view of their multiple security cameras from behind their reception desk. It’s curious then, just how many criminals think they’re going to get away with their nefarious plots when they’re obviously having their every move recorded. In this particular case of criminal activity behind the gates of a storage facility, one individual’s crimes were vast and numerous and the storage unit full of $1,000,000 cash was just one aspect of his overall crimes. Aside from the money stashed away in small bags, authorities discovered a sawed-off shotgun. Not content to regulate his criminal activity to the storage unit he purchased, the culprit’s home would prove quite interesting and fruitful to the investigating agents. Inside the dwelling in South Brisbane, Australia were steroids, several kilograms of either speed or cocaine, a taser and a semi-automatic handgun. This whole ordeal was uncovered when the man tried to dodge a traffic checkpoint , when police caught up with him he was discovered to be carrying a knife and fifty grams of what authorities concluded was either speed or “Crystal” meth. While stories such as these seem far-fetched and torn from the pages of a 1980’s crime novel, each new day brings to light further atrocities and crimes being committed with the aid of a storage locker. Perhaps this deluge of information will bring to light to the fact that storage facilities are equipped with the technology to catch active criminals and will discourage similar knaves from attempting to mask their crimes at self storage facilities.