This is one of those questions that will probably end up getting an answer that is not liked or not understood fully but I will do my best to explain it anyways so that you understand exactly what is going on here.
Pawn shops are like any other business out there in most cases, but they are also often considered a “Financial Services” business as well.
That’s because they are directly involved in the transactions and loaning of money through a contract. Even though the loans are known as “No Recourse Loans” they are still loans.
Because of that, there are some guidelines that most pawn shops must follow when it comes to protecting the information of their customers, who they can disperse that information to and under what circumstances they are allowed to do so.
So when it comes to trying to find out who pawned a particular item, or if a particular person came in and did any business with that pawn shop recently – most pawn shops can’t give away that kind of information to just anyone.
They have a duty to protect their customer’s information as best as possible and they would be held liable legally if they were to divulge that information to an unauthorized third party without strong legal reasoning or backing.
When it comes to things that pawn shops can and can’t do, it gets tricky when you want them to tell you who pawned an item.
Who Can Pawn Shops Talk To
So with all of that in mind, there are scenarios in which pawn shops can tell certain people who may have come in or pawn something at some point in time.
Typically speaking this is going to mean local enforcement agencies, although depending on how the local or state laws are written in the state that the pawn shop operates in, that also may mean that they can only tell one law enforcement agency who is then “The Gatekeeper” through which other law enforcement requests must be made.
The reasons for this should probably be pretty obvious.
Pawn Shops And Bad Guys
Pawn shops have done a great job over the last few decades of really cleaning up their image. They are no longer an easy place for bad guys to take something stolen or something that they shouldn’t have.
With that in mind though, there are some cases in which pawn shops will still occasionally get something that is stolen brought into them.
Now, they do their best job to make sure that they don’t take anything that is stolen but unfortunately, it’s impossible to keep it all out all of the time.
So with that in mind, there has to be a legal mechanism for communicating with law enforcement and helping them track down stolen merchandise and those people that potentially stole the item to begin with.
Because of that, pawn shops are of course authorized to tell law enforcement what they need to know as long as it is in connection with a criminal complaint or case of some sort.
That having been said, sometime pawn shops have built great reputations and relationships with the law enforcement agencies in their area and will happily work with law enforcement to try to track down and find stolen items as well.
How To Find Out Who Pawned Something At A Pawn Shop
So with all of that having been said, there are some ways you can go about trying to find out who pawned something at a pawn shop.
Typically speaking you are probably going to have to make a police report with your local law enforcement agency and request that they follow up with that particular pawn shop to see if the item you are questioning was pawned by anyone that could be a suspect in your case.
Assuming that the police department does actually go ahead and check with the pawn shop, it will then be at the police department’s discretion as to if they release that information to you or not.
I’m sure that’s not exactly what you wanted to hear but unfortunately it is the most assured path towards getting the information you want. Hopefully you live in a city where the police department has the time and resources to follow up on these things with pawn shops and that the pawn shop itself also has a good relationship with the department.
Mandy Dormain started working for Pawn Nerd in 2020. Mandy grew up in a small town in northern Tennessee. But moved to New York for university. Before joining Pawn Nerd, Mandy briefly worked as a freelance journalist for several radio stations. She covers politics and economy stories.