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Pawnbrokers work to maintain good reputation after crime

Aug 07, 2012 Quinn Thomas

In the past few years, many pawn shop owners have seen a large increase in customers as popular reality shows "Hardcore Pawn" and "Pawn Stars" have shown a window into the industry. However, as with many in the short term lending sector, a misstep by one individual could affect the reputation of all involved in the business. After one large bust of a pawn shop owner, who was found to be knowingly selling stolen items, police are considering levying regulations on all pawn shops. These brokers are now trying to make sure their companies remain afloat, while maintaining the favorable reputation. Hawaiian pawn companies affected after sting According to HawaiiNewsNow, pawnbroker Luke Warner was recently arrested for accepting stolen property in exchange for cash and drugs, after a two year-long investigation. However, numerous pawn shop owners told KHON-TV that criminals operating in the industry are few and far between, so they are trying to uphold the good name of those in the sector. "I think what happened on Friday caused a bad name for all pawn shops, which I think is not right," shop owner Joe Stacy told the source. "This is our living and we try to be honest." Because of Warner's bust, KHON reported, police at the Hawaiian Prosecuting Attorney's Office are considering requiring brokers to photograph every item that comes into their shops, as well as the person selling it or using it as collateral. Many owners believe this would turn consumers off from doing business with the companies. Moreover, requiring extensive records may levy extra costs onto brokers, potentially affecting their business continuity. Some pawn shop owners are asking Hawaiian officials to go about regulating the sector in a different manner, by making obtaining a license harder. Many owners help solve crimes Despite the recent crime in Hawaii, it may serve owners to inform their customers that oftentimes, the actions of brokers actually help to solve crimes. Seacoast Online reported an ordinance concerning transaction forms is being considered in Exeter, New Hampshire, after a similar regulation in nearby Plaistow has been very lucrative. The source said since the ordinance was adopted in Plaistow, pawn brokers have helped police solve hundreds of stolen property and burglary cases. Elsewhere in New Hampshire, a recently pawned stolen GSP helped Nashua police catch a man suspected of robbing several area homes, the Nashua Patch reported. The pawnshop owner helped lead police to Sean Torla, who was then arrested for burglary, forgery, possession of a controlled drug and receiving stolen property, the source detailed.