Okay, so here we go with one question I get often, and one that I will enjoy answering.
The question is this, are pawnshops connected to the police departments?
Now there are typically a few different types of people that will be asking this question.
The first person asking this question will typically be someone who has had something stolen from them and are wondering what the likelihood is that they will get it back if it ended up in a pawn shop.
The second type of person that will be asking this type of question will be somebody who’s thinking about stealing something, or somebody that has already stolen something, and is thinking about taking it to a pawn shop to either make a loan on sell it.
Well, let me just put everyone’s minds to ease for a moment.
First of all, let me just establish right from the very beginning that these days pawn shops work very closely with their local law enforcement agencies.
They both have an interest in keeping stolen merchandise out of pawn shops whenever possible.
It is very common for local law enforcement agencies to communicate with pawn shops regularly about recently stolen merchandise, or merchandise that has been involved in any robberies across the area.
Additionally, in pretty much every state that I know of, a pawn shop is required to report their daily transactions to the local police departments or local law enforcement officials.
This helps police track down stolen merchandise, and catch the bad guys involved in stealing it.
For one reason or another, you might wondering if pawn shops are connected to police departments. Whether you are looking for information about something that has been stolen from you or wonder if you may be purchasing stolen goods from a pawn shop, this question may have crossed your mind.
How Well Are Pawn Shops And Police Departments Connected
Well that honestly is going to depend on how the state’s laws are laid out, or how the laws in that particular city or county are written.
For instance, some pawnshops are forced to report electronically into a database that is known as LEADS.
What a pawn shop reports to LEADS online, that information will be available to police departments across the nation.
Additionally, some of this information is reported on a live basis, transaction by transaction, and not just once a day.
What this means is, that police departments may have a live look at what’s going on in a pawn shop at any given moment.
Now unfortunately, this isn’t the case for all pawn shops. Some pawn shops are required to report just once a day by any means such as paper, or cards even.
Because of that, the ability for a Police Department to see what is going on inside of a given pawn shop at any moment in time will often be dependent on the regulations governing how those pawnshops in that state or area are required to report their transactions.
So If A Pawn Shop Does Not Report To LEADS, Is It Free Reign For Bad Guys
Not at all! police departments and pawn shops work very closely these days and their communication back and forth has never been better.
Many times, if a pawn shop even suspects that somebody is bringing something stolen into the shop, they will often call their local police department or law enforcement officials to let them know about the suspicious behavior.
Equally, if the police department is looking for a particular individual, they will often let the pawn shops in their area know so that they can keep an eye out for them.
The relationship between police departments and pawn shops these days has never been better. Sure there are some scenarios in which pawn shops and their local police department don’t get along as well as they could, but overall that is not the case.
What This Means For Bad Guys
If you are somebody that has stolen something, or are thinking about stealing something and taking it down to a local pawn shop to sell it, then I would really suggest that you don’t do that.
The likelihood of you getting caught is very high. Pawn shops don’t want stolen merchandise in their stores and they will do whatever they have to do to keep it out.
In addition, police departments know to check the reports that local pawn shop submit to them in the event that they have a report of something valuable being stolen.
There’s a lot better ways to earn money than by stealing something that belongs to somebody else and trying to sell at a pawn shop.
What This Means For Victims Of Crimes
What this means for you is that you can get some peace of mind knowing that pawn shops and police departments work very well together these days.
Both of them have an interest in returning any stolen merchandise that they encounter back to its rightful owner as quickly as possible.
If something of yours has been stolen and ended up in a pawn shop, there’s a very good chance that the police department will be able to locate it and do what they have to do to help you get an item back.
Of course, it never hurts to take a copy of your police report down to some of the local pawn shops and ask them in person, or at least make them aware that you are looking for something that has been stolen from you.
They may not always be able to tell you if something like that has come in, or who brought it in, but if you make them aware of the problem they will almost always immediately contact the law enforcement officials in your area to get the situation resolved.
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.