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Last weekend, I had almost all of my power handtools stolen from my garage.
Just thought I'd pass on a few things I've learned from this.

1) Record the serial numbers of all your tools, hand and/or stationary. I had not (yea, I'm REALLY regretting that now). As I have since learned, pawnshops in Texas have to report to the police everything they take in. This report is based on serial numbers and that is mostly what the police look for when searching the database. The local constables have recommened that I do this even for my large stationary tools 'cause, in their words, "Ya never know when the bad guys are gonna back up a pickup to your garage door"

2) Lock the garage door. I know, sounds obvious. Our garage door doesn't have a handle on the outside. I normally do lock but apparently forgot last Sat.


3) Lock all the cases to something solid. I had the tools in their cases in the back of the garage on a shelf. I now have a big bike cable so that if and when I replace what was stolen they will be cable together and locked to bolts set in the wall. Anything to slow the @#[email protected]!#% down.

4) Make distinguishing marks on your tools. As the cops have said, serial numbers are good but initials or you name engraved somewhere are good too.


5) An LOUD alarm on the door would have alerted us someone was getting into the garage. We were home at the time of the breakin. Scary eh?




Hope that helps someone.

Bill
 

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Ever loan somebody a tool that has his name on it?
 

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Marking tools, as suggested by Crime Prevention folks Two Letter State abbreviation, Drivers License Number, DL for drivers license. Example, OR123456DL. may not prevent Pawning, but any comp running the number will know who the tool belonged to. It works to, once ran the number on a tv in the back of a guys car, said ti was his grandmothers but could not tell me the correct name, victim had not yet reported the crime. Always nice when you can go up to a house and say we recovered your property and they did not know it was gone.
 

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I was going to a little church years ago when it was robbed.

The investigating officer told the preacher, "It would help the investigation if you weren't an accessory to the crime."

The preacher was driving along when he saw a guy who had attended several times lugging a heavy load. "Need a ride?"

Turns out the heavy load was all the stuff he'd just stolen from the church
 

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I mark all my tools and lock things up, but the best thing I ever did was get Zeus. He's 120 lbs of big ole' teeth an fur with a bark that'll stop you in your tracks. He's deterred one intruder for sure, not sure how many have changed their minds before hand due to him.

The other thing I did (and my wife hates this) is; Ohio passed the castle doctrine which pretty much means if someone comes in my house, garage or car I can defend myself (read: shoot them) without the intruder having legal rights. So I put "CASTLE DOCTRINE" with the code number and "YOU WILL GET SHOT" on all the doors of my house and garage. The nice thing about this is it also keeps the traveling salesmen and religious door bangers off my porch.
 

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I don't know why anyone would bother breaking into a garage when they can go down any city block and probably find 50% of them wide open. We (myself included) get pretty casual during the daytime leaving the overhead doors open while working in the backyard etc. So if you don't do it already, shut the garage door while running your trains!

We have been broken into in the past, at another house. It's a horrible feeling
 

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Posted By paintjockey on 02/19/2009 8:49 AM
I mark all my tools and lock things up, but the best thing I ever did was get Zeus. He's 120 lbs of big ole' teeth an fur with a bark that'll stop you in your tracks. He's deterred one intruder for sure, not sure how many have changed their minds before hand due to him.

The other thing I did (and my wife hates this) is; Ohio passed the castle doctrine which pretty much means if someone comes in my house, garage or car I can defend myself (read: shoot them) without the intruder having legal rights. So I put "CASTLE DOCTRINE" with the code number and "YOU WILL GET SHOT" on all the doors of my house and garage. The nice thing about this is it also keeps the traveling salesmen and religious door bangers off my porch.

Paint jockey, you are my kind of neighbor!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
We have the same thing (Castle Doctrine) here in TX. Like it or not, it is ok to use deadly force to protect your property. Would definitely have if I had heard the creeps opening the door. Thus the loud alarm now on the door.

I like the idea of the DL engraved on the tool.

Bill
 

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The driver's license number on all of your tools. A police officer can immediately learn who that number is issued to. One guy put his wife's number on the tools. So the police officer asked the guy, "These are your tools?" "Yes" "Hello Martha".
Don't use your social security number unless that's your driver's license number also.
Each time you buy a new tool, write it down: where purchased, how much and a description and anything odd about it (ex: electrical tape on the cord).
One other thing: when I went to help my late father-in-law, I'd take some tools. He always claimed about half of them were his. I painted ALL of my hand tools with international orange spray paint. I still have tools where you can see that paint. (if a police officer sees some tools with paint all other them and there's a report about stolen tools with paint on them... 2 + 2 = 4)
And most important, REPORT the crime. Your breaking and entering probably wasn't the only one.
 

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"No tresspassing. Survivors will be prosecuted."
 

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Posted By Torby on 02/19/2009 12:50 PM
"No trespassing. Survivors will be prosecuted."




I like the ones around certain critical facilities:

USE OF DEADLY FORCE AUTHORIZED[/b]
 

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Posted By barnmichael on 02/19/2009 1:13 PM
Posted By Torby on 02/19/2009 12:50 PM
"No trespassing. Survivors will be prosecuted."




I like the ones around certain critical facilities:

USE OF DEADLY FORCE AUTHORIZED[/b]



I was reading in the local news a while back that in many states it is illegal to actually defend your property. In many states, by law, you have to make every effort to escape. For example, if you come home to a burglary, you have to leave immediately and call the police. If at home you have to try to escape out the back door or a window. Of course, you can defend yourself if trapped, but you have to try to flee the scene first. Your state has to have a "stand your ground" law or a "castle" law (man's home is his castle). And these laws vary widely from state to state.

I was amazed. It actually has to be lawful to defend yourself, your family, someone else or your property.

Bob
 

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Here in Iowa, a farmer rigged a shotgun to fire toward the front door of a cabin on his farm if the door was opened. A man broke the lock and entered, the gun went off and he was shot in the groin. He sued the farmer and in the trial he admitted that he broke in with the intent was to burgle the property. The farmer said he initially had the gun aimed at head height, but his wife talked him into aiming lower so as to not kill.

There was a lot of discussion in letters to the editor of the newspapers and many TV editorials during the trial and many people were incensed at the lawsuit and the apparent coddling of the burglar in the case, but all to no avail. The farmer lost the lawsuit and was required to pay the burglar for the injuries. He lost his farm and more due to the award. I don't remember if he also went to jail, but I believe the burglar did not.


My personal opinion is that if you are hurt when committing a crime, it is your own fault and you should have no recourse what-so-ever... but apparently the law in Iowa does not believe the same way.
 

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I suppose the lawyers figure he has a right to rob you.
 

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Just knock on the door and tell the homeowner it's burglary and by state law they have to leave the premises. Then clean out the house. That makes it legal right?
 

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When a claim is filed, the claims settlement clerk will require some proof that you actually owned the goods before they can ask their boss to sign your claim settlement cheque. While your claim may be honest and valid, without that proof it can not proceed without being substantiated, and the onus of proof is on the claimant.

It is unlikely that any of us have saved the receipts of all the tools we have purchased over the decades. As a matter of fact most of us could not even list all the tools we own if they disappeared.

Here are a couple hints that could save you a lot of grief.

Tape the receipt and mark the serial number of tools in the owner’s manual. Keep them all together in some place other than the workshop. Even if you never file a claim; if the tool fails during the warranty period, you have the necessary documents to return it to the point of purchase or to the manufacturer.

Take pictures of all your tools, or better yet a movie with narrative. Most digital cameras now have movie and sound capability, and it’s hard to tell from a picture a cheap set of wrenches from Craftsman or Snap-on tools.

Keep your tools out of sight. Nothing catches a male’s attention quicker than an open tool chest full of shiny sockets and wrenches, or benches and racks full of power tools. Most of my small workshop tools are stored in plastic bins with the lids on. A couple of bays of shelving full of plastic bins is a lot less attractive to visitors than a room full of power tools.
 

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As an aside, regarding any receipts, remember that most all receipts today are made on thermal paper and as such if exposed to heat will turn black, although the norm is that they fade more rapidly than one would think. So, if you're going to go to the trouble of saving the receipt, I would suggest that you make either a plain bond paper type copy and/or a scanned electronic image for long term storage.
 

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I never did understand EXCESSIVE FORCE laws. I believe there is no such thing.

I often wonder how stupid laws get passed.

Then I read in Todays paper about a state who ranks 48 th in the quality of education wants to give back the bailout money for educations back to the feds.

Now even though the bailout money is ear marked for education by the feds the states do not have to follow those guide lines and they can use it for anything.

I have stoped wondering how stupid laws get passed. I know now.
 
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