And you thought your landlord was bad.
A western Pennsylvania man is facing criminal charges after he was caught on camera stealing packages from his own tenants while they were away on vacation.
According to WTAE-TV, the landlord, 63-year-old Clark Wigginton, claims he was owed back rent by the tenants, and took the packages in exchange.
The station says the parcels, delivered to the home on 8th Street in Sharpsburg last month, contained an engagement ring and camera worth hundreds of dollars.
When the tenants returned home from vacation, they’d expected to find the packages waiting for them. Instead they found an empty mailbox, and a Post Office claiming the delivery had already been made.
The tenants called police soon after, and when officers arrived at the home, they noticed a camera positioned above the home’s porch and mailbox.
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The footage was reviewed and allegedly revealed a shirtless Wigginton walking over from his home across the street and taking the packages into his possession.
Wigginton was confronted with the evidence and reportedly admitted to the theft. WTAE says he is to be arraigned on charges of theft and receiving stolen property later this month.
A quick Google search reveals thefts between landlords and tenants to be a fairly common phenomenon, and the subject of countless blog posts on both sides of the issue. In one such case, a Houston landlord claims a tenant moved out and took an entire stainless steel refrigerator with her.
The National Landlords Association has even devoted an entire post on its website to advising members on what to do if confronted with thieving tenants.
But tenants can be victims too, and as in the Sharpsburg case, those thefts are sometimes captured on camera. The phrase “landlord steals packages” returns 15,000 hits on Youtube alone.
Since the Sharpsburg incident, Wigginton’s tenants have had their valuables returned. But while they’ve been made whole again, they say their trust in people may have been permanently broken.
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