Although pawn shops help area consumers with short term lending
needs, these businesses can sometimes unknowingly purchase items from thieves who bring in stolen goods. For this reason, many police departments are asking pawn shops to work with them to stop the illegal activity.
KSPR-TV reports that police in Ozark, Missouri, are asking county officials to make changes to an ordinance that requires pawn shops to enter information about every item that is brought in to be sold into a national database. Authorities say that the policy has been effective at catching thieves who have stolen property from area homes and businesses. However, the department is now hoping to include buy-sell shops in the ordinance to increase the chances of arresting suspects, states the news source. The police department in Cobb County, Georgia, is also looking to crack down on the number of thefts in the area, according to WSB Radio. Authorities are asking county commissioners to pass policies that would require local pawn shops to take pictures of both sellers and items being sold, along with the individual's fingerprints. The businesses would log the information into a database that can be accessed by the police department.