View Full Version : Prosecuting gas thieves

09-11-2004, 12:35 PM
I know we had a thread on this a while back, but I couldn't find it. Listening to my police scanner this morning, I heard about another gas drive off at a 7-11. I am really sick and tired of people stealing gas, causing prices to continue to go up, and cheating the retailer.

Here is my suggestion. If the clerk or someone else gets a tag number and description of the vehicle, I feel the police should find out who the owner of the vehicle is and issue them a ticket. I think the minimum amount of the ticket should be $200.00. Even if it wasn't the owner driving the vehicle, it still belongs to them, so they are responsible for any violations that occur if they loan the car to someone.

If the owner isn't the culprit, then the owner can find out who was driving the vehicle and let them pay the ticket. It would just take one time for a person to learn their lesson.

I know that we are short handed when it comes to law enforcement, however, this has become a huge problem and there needs to be a solution.

Any comments?

Joe Schmoe
09-11-2004, 01:41 PM
I'm with you, gas thieves are no-goodniks. But a law that functioned as you suggest would allow a person working at 7-11 to convict me of a crime. One letter or number off & I'm getting a ticket in the mail instead of the punk who jumped the pump.

If I had to go to court to defend myself & won, I'd sue the store owner for falsely accusing me of gas theft. Store owners would have to show up in court like traffic cops to defend their tickets. The cashier (eyewitness) may not work there anymore by the time it gets to court.

Leave the pump off until they come in & pay.

Maybe set up a system of cameras to get good picts of any & all license plates that leave the station.

I don't want anymore reasons for security cameras in public places.

I recently heard that in New Jersey, they don't even allow self-serve.

09-11-2004, 02:02 PM
Joe: You are correct. New Jersey and Oregon both do it the old fashioned way... By providing hard working people those things that for some are a distant memory... JOBS!

09-13-2004, 01:02 PM
Joe I think you have a great recommendation, one that's commonly used in Europe, even to catch speeders and light runners......cameras!!! Cameras would verify the correct tag number. Sure it would be expensive for each service station to install a set of cameras, but seems to me like in the long run it would save them.

09-13-2004, 07:04 PM
Camera's sound good to me too. If convenient stores continue to allow customers to pump before they pay, then they need something to safeguard themselves against gas thieves.

09-14-2004, 12:16 AM
Well, they have cameras inside the stores. Why not have them outside as well? Only makes sense to me.

Joe Schmoe
09-14-2004, 01:10 PM
No, see that's the part I don't like, cameras in a public area. I don't want a time stamped trail of every store i go to... available to anyone who can get it.

Goverment or police don't need a trail available on everyone the minute they leave their doors.

My real suggeston is that they turn off the pump until the customer pays.

Cheap, inobtrusive & easy enough for the store to do without invading my privacy.

09-14-2004, 03:06 PM
The cameras are popular in many areas in the United States. In fact, if you drove around Richardson Texas, there are eight or more cameras to control traffic on select intersections.

I am totally in favor of the cameras to monitor light runners. These people need to realize yellow does not mean stomp accelerator. It mean slow down and stop if you can. Most people gun the engine and hit the light red sometime while in the intersection. These cameras cathc them when the cops are not around. When cops are around, most people act like "angels." Jumping a light can and does kill and the more methods for catching these people, the better.

Should the cameras be in the gas station bays? Sure. But the people should either pay at the pump or not be able to start pumping until the cashier is paid. The station that allows pumping before payment is just asking to be ripped off.

09-14-2004, 05:08 PM
You're right mranderson. Cameras, although nice for gas stations, aren't really the only solution......the best solution would probably be just require people to pay before they pump. Simple solution as far as I'm concerned.

09-15-2004, 08:48 PM
What are y'all talking about? Stealing gas is a pretty serious crime. If you're caught, you lose your driver's license amongst other things.

Making the price go up?! Seriously? Do you believe that?

09-15-2004, 09:10 PM
Catching someone is the tough part though. It rarely occurs. And by the way, I don't think we ever said it wasn't a serious crime. In fact, we think quite the contrary.

Oh, stealing isn't the reason for gasoline prices going up...that's more political. But the service station itself does have to pay for the lost gas somehow. As with any business, profits make up for that.

09-15-2004, 09:21 PM
Stealing is never something I condone. But really... raise your prices as high as they are and it's just going to force some people that are of limited means to do things they otherwise wouldn't.

These days we think that $1.59 for gas is a good deal.

That's screwed up IMHO.

09-15-2004, 09:29 PM
Unfortunately, there's little we can do about it. That's in the the hands of our political officials, OPEC, and oil companies. If you don't like the way things are currently being handled, vote for someone else in November. That's all I can recommend.

09-16-2004, 08:35 AM
How does the White House influence gas prices? The last time I checked, they wanted to drill in Alaska which would have potentially increased the domestic oil supply significantly. As I recall, it wasn't anyone in the White House that blocked that.

Other than that, how would we obtain cheaper crude oil?

Our largest problem right now is the lack of refinery capacity. The oil companies are actually enjoying record profits. We haven't opened a new oil refinery in many years. In fact, Shell was setting up to actually close one down in California if you can believe that. Seems like they've delayed the closure though. This plant, however, is 72 years old! EPA restrictions need to be notched down so that we can build newer and more efficient refineries. Unfortunately, I don't see the oil companies doing somthing on purpose that would actually lower the price of the gasoline that they sell. There would have to be some pretty serious incentives there.

Detroit really needs to start to pursue the release of non-fossil fuel systems for cars. I think that's really the only alternative at this point.


09-16-2004, 09:22 AM
Midtwoner: You are correct. The fact that it was not the White House that stopped the Alaska drilling is one reason we would make a serious mistake electing Kerry President.

Bush wants the drilling. Congress stopped it. Kerry would have not backed the plan, but supported Congressional efforts to stop the drilling, thus causing prices to esculate even further.

The eco-nuts, "tree huggers," as they are called, stopped it. They claim it would ruin the scenic beauty of the area and deplete oil from the earth.

I have news for them. There is enough oil under this earth to make every person on the planet very wealthy. Plus, the claim we are running out of water. Hogwash. Water evaporates into the sky, then causes rain. We are using the same water God used to wash his hands after he created this place.

I agree. Better soultions can be found. Hybrid is the current answer (no pun intended since it is half electric). Hybrid vehicles, at this point, are about $4,000 more than their totally combustable counterparts. That will change as we grow more dependant on hybrid technology. Plus, half the difference is tax deductable. Maybe if ALL of it was, then technology would advance.

Until then, we need good conservatives that KNOW drilling in untapped areas is the answer for now.

By the way. I think, Kerry's initials are JFK. THAT scares me. :eek:

09-16-2004, 11:02 AM
Personally, I think we need to completely remove our dependence on oil. We're developing the technology for Hydrogen-fueled automobiles. Let's continue to press that technology.

In regards to the Alaska Wildlife refuge.....I don't think there's as much oil there as the administration would like to believe. The real land mine is the Gulf....we need to continue exploration there.

And our administration needs to change its approach. It's running the oil wells in Iraq now. They can easily influence the price of oil on the global market by altering how much oil they're pumping out of Iraq. In addition, I'd get a little more tough with OPEC. We've invaded the Middle East now and have a stake there. Tell the Middle Eastern countries to either put more oil on the market to lower prices or pay the consequences. Hey, we set prices just as easily as they do. We can easily stop shipping food over there. They'd starve.

Even with Alaska we'd still be depending on foreign oil. By tapping into something like Hydrogen, we could completely forget about oil, tell the Middle Easterners to starve to death, and forget about it completely.

09-16-2004, 11:18 AM
I think fuel cells are very far off. The Oil & Gas industry is just too big and too powerful to let it happen. As for "us" refusing to ship food over there, if we refused, they'd just get it elsewhere (France). Until we have our own sources of oil, controlled by Americans on American soil, the gas prices have nowhere to go but up.

Do yourself a favor, invest in Oil & Gas futures.