Inola man finds stolen lawn mower in an AR ad online

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Updated: 5/09/2013 10:11 am Published: 5/09/2013 12:07 am

An Inola man found his used $4,000 lawn mower, a Dixie Chopper, on an Arkansas pawn shop's Craigslist ad online, and the Rogers County Sheriff's office told him he was lucky the thief took it across state lines.

It was stolen from Johnny Smith in April.

"I thought that is it, I have to find a new one to replace it," said Smith.

His friends told him to check Craigslist.

"There was no way I would find it on Craigslist, I thought," said Smith, who told FOX23 News he had never even used that website before.

"But then a couple weeks ago I was looking through ads in Fayetteville to replace my old one and I found mine!"

He identified it as his because it had markings on it that were identical to his and he had the serial number written down. He called the Rogers County Sheriff's Office to have them identify and match up the serial numbers with the pawn broker.

"I was so elated and excited I ran down the hall with my iPad with the ad on it and my wife was still in bed and she said, 'What is going on?' and I said 'I found it!'"

The Rogers County Sheriff's Office was able to work with the Rogers Arkansas Police Department to obtain a search warrant and pick up the lawn mower. Originally, the pawn broken told Smith he would have to pay $1,500 to have it back.

"There was no reason why Smith had to be victimized twice," said Rogers County Sheriff Scott Walton. "Because Arkansas pawn shop laws are different than Oklahoma pawn shop laws, we were able to pick up his lawn mower for him."

"Sheriff Scott Walton told me not to pay that pawn shop a dime," said Smith.

The Arkansas law states in Title 18 Paragraph 202 in section A and B if any pawn broker failed to return property to the true owner then the true owner could resort to legal action. If owner is successful in the legal action the pawn broker has to pay all court expenses.

If the pawn shop was in Oklahoma then the sheriff's office would put a hold on that item and then it would be taken to a property hearing with a judge. That process can take months. Instead, the sheriff's office was able to work with the Rogers Arkansas police department and deliver Smith's lawn mower back to him within a couple weeks of him finding the as on Craigslist.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

Mayor Maynot - 5/9/2013 8:43 AM
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Wow that pawnbroker sounds like a real crumbum. It's good that the law could arrange a quick resolution to this incident.
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