Tenant stole items from furnished rental property

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Latest post 02-12-2007 12:13 PM by Drew. 5 replies.
  • 02-12-2007 8:05 AM

    Question [=?] Tenant stole items from furnished rental property

    Brother and girlfriend live in my parents furnished rental property no lease girlfriend leaves while brother in hospital took most of funiture and grandfathers tools ect
    Police will not help they say it is a civil matter someone please explain to me why a person can take things without your permission and it is not classified as thief?
    Have neighbors who will state they saw her take items and gave license plate # of the persons helping her move.What do the police actully do in florida? I thought they helped the victim. My parents are elderly and my brother has just entered a hospice program I need to get this resolved before I leave(I live out of state) why must my parents hire a attorney to reclaim stolen property we have reciepts for most items and a inventory records of items. Girfriend also inpersonated mother with her ss# to reactivate her cell phone after I had it disconnected.
    also we found some missing items in a neigbors garage which is a rental owned by family member police went to ask if they knew of any items taken and told police they didn't know. when I told police they said once again it was civil matter
  • 02-12-2007 8:47 AM In reply to

    • Drew
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    re: Tenant stole items from furnished rental property

    I can understand where police would want to duck this as to a domestic debate.

    Your state may have an unlawful detainer type law that fits.

    Personally I think that parents, brother and GF probably need to retain 1 attorney of behalf of all to seek an unlawful detainer, return, damages etc from the galpal. Essentially only the property owner has standing as to its being detained by others. The victims need to be assertive! Unless we are talking about expensive furniture there is unlikley to be much money in this for an attorney so you all may need to be creative to get the right talent in place. Hint--if the 4 victims can somehow jawbone 4 theft complaints into place the gal may not know the police have zero zeal to follow up. Hey, 4 theft actions places her at serious risk--she might be inclined to see the light--CAUTION to extort a civil remedy under threat of a criminal charge is just that, a form of extortion itself--don't go there--its probably done all the time by lawyers but they know how to use words more skillfully that you do!

    But as a tenant of a furnished rental unit if you as a co tenant strip the place of furniture, bedding etc I may have additional damages against you because you have rendered the place such that I cannot readily sleep or eat there.

    If there is an oral lease for rent the parents can selectively go after galpal for unpaid rent



  • 02-12-2007 9:06 AM In reply to

    Feedback [*=*] re: Tenant stole items from furnished rental property

    do you mean the 4 victims, brother parents and myself to file theft charges? sorry not getting what you mean
    Help!!
  • 02-12-2007 10:58 AM In reply to

    re: Tenant stole items from furnished rental property

    The police are correct.

    This is a civil matter.

    Under the circumstances you describe a person CAN take stuff and all you have is a civil dispute as to ownership claims, not crimes. That's why the police don't get involved.

    That's the biggest risk of living with boyfriends and/or girlfriends.

    • The right of the people 
    • to keep and bear arms,
    • shall not be infringed.
  • 02-12-2007 11:00 AM In reply to

    • Drew
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    • Joined on 03-30-2000
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    re: Tenant stole items from furnished rental property

    Yes, thats exactly what I mean, if Mom, Dad, Brother, GF each had identifiable personal properly they owned stored in the unit then each of them reports the specific property they owned as "stolen."

    Note I think the critical issue is that one gets it reported as "stolen." Unless you have direct personal observation the person in the act you personally do NOT know for sure who stole it. Now you may be 91% sure based upon comments from a neighbor who is likley--but that's not the same thing! The list of possible suspects comes as a separate matter--and you want to be careful you don't accuse a person of something you cannot prove.



  • 02-12-2007 12:13 PM In reply to

    • Drew
      Consumer
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    • Joined on 03-30-2000
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    re: Tenant stole items from furnished rental property

    I'm not so sure that if I lease a furnished unit to X and Y and party Y backs up a truck and empties out the place that I cannot make a criminal theft complaint and have it stick.

    Now I would agree that "family" and lack of a written lease may make the issues all that much more murky--and as police or DA I'd try my best to duck in a no win situation.

    There may also be some quirky issues as to if assets are entrusted to your care--as in a furnished unit--just when there in an actual element of theft or unlawful detainer involved. It may be that the rightful owner of each item needs to serve a demand upon the supposed holders of the items to return same before it become an unlawful detainer. And if I conveyed a full setof furniture to two tenants it might be wise to serve them both for its return!

    Again I bet its wise for teh owners to get decent counsel as to how to play this one out--I'll bet it 80% poker and only 20% law!



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