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FOUND GEAR - Stolen skiing/climbing gear (SLC or nearby): Looking for owner (Josh M?)


Original Post
Miguel D · · SLC · Joined May 2014 · Points: 483
TL;DR VERSION:
If you know someone who had stolen climbing and skiing gear recently in/near Salt Lake City or surrounding states, have them contact me. Some of the stuff is labeled "Joshua M" or "JM"
* I bought this gear from a guy on OfferUp who clearly didn't know what he had. Claimed it was his stuff but had no idea how a beacon works and called crampons "shoe spikes." I paid him a small amount for it all that no person would accept if the gear was actually his. I would be willing to just take the loss and ship it to the rightful owner. Have him message me or comment here if you may know him

FULL STORY:
I was looking through the OfferUp listings here in SLC, and saw the post in the first picture. I messaged him about it and had the conversation shown in the second picture (edit: looks like I can't upload the full version to MP). In the conversation, there were a couple red flags already:
- Didn't know proper gear terminology ("shoe spikes" was my favorite)
- Was eager to get rid of it
- Would not accept venmo or paypal (can be just a simple preference, so by itself it's really nothing, but in context, it was suspicious)
- Claimed a full "ice climbing gear set up" and yet only had crampons for ice gear (as I later found out)

So he and another guy came to meet me with a backpack full of gear. Spread it all out on the lawn and started talking to me about it as best as he could given that he didn't really know what it all was. I played dumb like I didn't know much about gear to see how much he could actually tell me about it and recorded the whole conversation on my phone, figured it may come in handy at some point. This backpack contained the "other" stuff he was referring to in his first message, but did not include the climbing gear he was showing on the listing picture. Some of this stuff was labeled "Joshua M" and the tent specifically reads "JOSHUAWA MASON." This backpack contained:
- two beacons
- avalung
- probe
- ice axe
- a pair of crampons
- shovel
- ski goggles
- tent
- gas canister
- BD headlamp
- shinguards (random?)

After some dicsussion he said he said his mom had the other backpack with the climbing gear (from the picture) and he would have her bring it over. So we waited around in the front lawn waiting for her for a little while but she was taking too long so we settled that I'd give him $50 for this stuff and he would contact me later after getting the other backpack with the climbing gear. He came back about 45 minutes later with said backpack, which contained those things shown in the picture:
- harness
- two pairs of shoes
- belay device
- couple biners

I was hoping that I'd be able to locate the owner before he came back but no luck. I thought about calling the police and have them meet me there when this guy came, but I couldn't really prove it was stolen gear and I was concerned about repercussions to myself if it was obvious that I got him caught. Maybe I could have figured out a better way to handle this. Oh well, too late now.
After some more discussion (also recorded), I ended up giving him and additional $20 for the climbing gear above, for a total of $70 for all the gear noted above. No one in their right mind would sell all their gear for this cheap. Unless of course, it isn't their gear.

I did call the SLC non-emergency line and reported this through the channels they asked. Sounds like they can't do much about it right now and only had me submit a tip via text message to their tip line. I was told to wait until I get a response from that. Although I am trying to help out the owner, I still feel bad that I rewarded a thief for doing so. I hope he can get caught

It could be the real owner is someone not named Josh but he bought gear from a Josh and then got his gear stolen. Who knows, but whoever they are, they should be able to identify the specifics of all this gear. So all that being said, if you know someone that is missing some climbing and skiing gear in or around SLC (or maybe even surrounding states?), share this post with them so I can get them their gear back. Thanks

FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 275

Nice gesture, Miguel. Doing the right thing. Do you have contact info for the thief/fence?

T A · · Denver · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 10

Props to you Miguel. Glad the rightful owner was found!

FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 275
T A wrote: Props to you Miguel. Glad the rightful owner was found!

He didn't say the rightful owner was found. He's looking for that person.

Miguel D · · SLC · Joined May 2014 · Points: 483

I do have a contact phone number for the person, and his profile on OfferUp. I'll post in a bit.

And Frank is correct, I have not found the owner (yet)

Briggs Lazalde · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 0

Yea 'found' in the title is a misunderstanding of case closed. 

Miguel D · · SLC · Joined May 2014 · Points: 483

Miguel D · · SLC · Joined May 2014 · Points: 483
Briggs Lazalde wrote: Yea 'found' in the title is a misunderstanding of case closed. 

Good point. I meant that I found the stuff, not that I found the owner, but I will correct 

Briggs Lazalde · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 0

He put his face up on adds for stolen items sales? Today on 'My Favorite Idiot" we have Rusten. Rusten is a deadbeat father of 3, and currently has a warrant for his arrest for stealing from his mother's purse, evading alimony, and for assaulting a police officer. Give it up for Rusten everybody!

FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 275

Miguel,

You could tell the police the story. They might have a report of the stolen gear.

Benny J · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 0

You should get detective Michael on the case. He is solid. He can spot a tweaker like no other, ask Delaney she is  also a big help!  Props though for real I wish you luck.

T A · · Denver · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 10
Briggs Lazalde wrote: Yea 'found' in the title is a misunderstanding of case closed. 

Ah, yes I misinterpreted the title as if the person was found. Still, I wish you luck 

Jeff Luton · · Ventucky Ca · Joined Aug 2016 · Points: 5
FrankPS wrote: Miguel,

You could tell the police the story. They might have a report of the stolen gear.

I’m no lawyer but wouldn’t that by buying stolen goods? And ain’t that illegal somehow? Again I’m no lawyer and I don’t know but you may wanna take a minute to look into it before calling the fuzz

Marc H · · Longmont, CO · Joined May 2007 · Points: 250

It’s also possible he came upon the gear in a legit way. Maybe he bought a storage unit at auction or something. Of course if it turns out to be stolen, fuck this guy and he deserves to be turned in.

Did you give him the $100, or less than that? If it turns out it was stolen and you find the true owner, I’m happy to contribute $20 to make you whole again for your good deed. I’ll bet four other MPers will do the same.

FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 275
Jeff Luton wrote:

I’m no lawyer but wouldn’t that by buying stolen goods? And ain’t that illegal somehow? Again I’m no lawyer and I don’t know but you may wanna take a minute to look into it before calling the fuzz

Yeah, I thought about that, but I doubt he would be charged. He's trying to find the rightful owner/victim and I think this thread shows his sincerity. I'm not a lawyer, but if he voluntarily told this story to the police, I seriously doubt there would be any repercussions. 

Briggs Lazalde · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 0
Jeff Luton wrote:

I’m no lawyer but wouldn’t that by buying stolen goods? And ain’t that illegal somehow? Again I’m no lawyer and I don’t know but you may wanna take a minute to look into it before calling the fuzz

However the feds will grant you impunity if you can provide secret Russian Intel

Jeff Luton · · Ventucky Ca · Joined Aug 2016 · Points: 5
FrankPS wrote:

Yeah, I thought about that, but I doubt he would be charged. He's trying to find the rightful owner/victim and I think this thread shows his sincerity. I'm not a lawyer, but if he voluntarily told this story to the police, I seriously doubt there would be any repercussions. 

I would hope not, never know when you’re gonna get that one dickhead though.

I asked for help from a cop after hitting a rockslide in my car once. Four hours later, my whole car was torn apart from a search for meth, of course they didn’t find any. I always think twice before going to the police for anything now. Just trying to look out for OP
Miguel D · · SLC · Joined May 2014 · Points: 483
Jeff Luton wrote:

I would hope not, never know when you’re gonna get that one dickhead though.

I asked for help from a cop after hitting a rockslide in my car once. Four hours later, my whole car was torn apart from a search for meth, of course they didn’t find any. I always think twice before going to the police for anything now. Just trying to look out for OP

Damn, that really sucks!

I hope nothing like that will occur in this case, especially since I have screenshots of his post, and a recorded conversation with the guy. But I guess you never know.

Also, bump. Still looking for owner. Help MP?

JK- Branin · · Southern New Hampshire · Joined Nov 2012 · Points: 56

Random funny note...

Remember the "climber" that had to get rescued during his mountain top proposal in CO a couple months ago? That guy was name Joshua Mason... And makes googling "Joshua Mason Climber" just give pages of coverage of his proposal mishap.

Miguel D · · SLC · Joined May 2014 · Points: 483
JK- Branin wrote: Random funny note...

Remember the "climber" that had to get rescued during his mountain top proposal in CO a couple months ago? That guy was name Joshua Mason... And makes googling "Joshua Mason Climber" just give pages of coverage of his proposal mishap.

I actually had not heard of this story, but that is indeed kinda funny. I'm sure that made it a very memorable engagement day

Miguel D · · SLC · Joined May 2014 · Points: 483
Marc H wrote: It’s also possible he came upon the gear in a legit way. Maybe he bought a storage unit at auction or something. Of course if it turns out to be stolen, fuck this guy and he deserves to be turned in.

Did you give him the $100, or less than that? If it turns out it was stolen and you find the true owner, I’m happy to contribute $20 to make you whole again for your good deed. I’ll bet four other MPers will do the same.

That's a good point Marc, I guess it is possible. My thought was that if this was legitimately his one way or another, he wouldn't have had a reason to lie about this being his gear (since he didn't even know how to use it).

I updated the story since your comment, but as I mentioned, I gave him $70 for all the gear listed. That's very generous of you, but at this moment it probably wouldn't feel right. Maybe after/if I find the owner and things are all settled. Thanks for the offer

Aaaaaaaaand........ bump.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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