Saturday, April 4, 2009

Companies with Thieves

Buz has learned that in the security consulting field, it is usually estimated that about 70-80% of theft from most firms is assisted or done by employees.

A couple Thursdays ago, I saw a good example of it in action--just by pure happenstance-which only confirms the estimate above.

And these jerks have good jobs making good money.

Your consultant was sitting on the back lot of the Rotunda, happily getting ready to dig into an unhealthy MickeyD's breakfast sandwich. We had pulled up into the parking lot just a few spaces away from a food service delivery truck, which features frozen Italian products like pizza and such. Kinda thought he was taking a break or straightening out his truck. Then, a beer distributor's truck pulls up between my auto and the food truck. The driver got out and while walking over to the food truck, slowly, get staring at me in a vaguely menacing way. At one point, I looked back, wondering WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING AT?
He walked over to the rear of the food truck, and still kept looking at me every now and then. Then old street Buz kicked in: the look was one of guilt and a fear I might notice something! Oh, I see what's gonna go down! (After all, why would the beer truck pull up on the back lot of the Rotunda; there's no liquor sold there.)

Sure enough, the food driver pulls beer driver into the back of his truck; I hear some stuff being moved around. Then, sure enough, the food driver jumps down with a whole bunch of frozen food in his hands, chatting with beer guy, this time both looking at me suspiciously and a bit angrily (what are you doing here?). They walk between the two trucks out of my sight; I hear the beer truck rollup doors being moved. Sheesh.

It became quite clear: the food guy is giving or selling some of his company's product to the beer guy at an arranged meet, probably in exchange for some beer. I guess they would be glad that Buz wasn't a private investigator hired by either company. As I finished eating and began driving away, the Beer guy gave me a final dirty look. Hey, bro, if you ain't doing anything stupid, you wouldn't have to worry about me, would you?

Just think a minute: these two clowns both have good jobs, almost certainly CDL drivers, making good money. A lot of people in this country would give so much to make the kind of money they do. Yet, they risk it all for a quick grab of a few goodies from their trucks: goodies which don't belong to them; we all pay the price for "shrinkage" at the store.

Betcha they're both stealing a lot more from their companies than even I saw or could guess
 (2-1). Betcha, 3-1, one or both could not pass a CDL drug test.
It's just a sad commentary on human nature.


Peter said...

the bad part is that these guys rationalize that they dont think anyone is going to be affected by their actions because they are only stealing from a corporate entity. however when numbers come up short and products are missing their bosses will be putting the heat on everyone instead of these spineless thugs. hardworking people will feel the corporate heat while these morons feast on Twinkies and National Bohemian.

buzoncrime said...

Peter---I couldn't agree with you more.

I wonder what, if any, controls these two businesses have on shortages; my guess is that these two guys have found a way, in the short term, to game the system somehow. And with this economy a lot of companies are shorting themselves on supervision, auditors, and security.

And it's always amazing to me, how folks who steal from their employers always think: I'll never get caught; then, when they do (often after years), they whine and complain about their fate.

And, if these guys are doing it, betcha (8-1) others in similar positions in those companies are doing similar stuff.

Oh, they're probably feasting on pizza and Miller Lite.

Peter said...

Well it sure does explain alot. I am surrounded by friend and family who are hard workers who have scrimped and saved in order to buy a house or a car. however we have people like this or the Madoffs of the world who dot mind taking advantage of the situation for their benefit. This mind set, that you are always entitled to something, is pervasive in all job and walks of life. People need to realize that we, the citizen, should be lifting, protecting, and bettering ourselves and we should not rely on the government for anything but a basic infrastructure.

i will be moving to the city soon and I find your posts interesting. keep up the good work.

buzoncrime said...

Thanks, Peter, and hope your move to Baltimore is a smooth one.

ppatin said...


This is off topic, but Peter Hermann's latest blog post is making it sound like the decision to ban off-duty cops from working for bars may be causing some problems.

"The police will be placing a unit out of service on Broadway every Thurs, Fri, Sat, and Sun nights from 2300 to 0230 hrs. They will stay in the area of Broadway and Lancaster walking foot and challenging those creating problems."

Sounds to me like they're getting more trouble from the Rodo's/Moby's/Cheerleaders crowd.

buzoncrime said...

PP--I hear you, but I'm not sure that the decision to ban police from working at the bars matters that much in this case. Fells Point has almost always acted up in the first warm weather and over the years, I've observed that not much is done until a serious incident. That's probably true for the bars on Market Place and Fed Hill too.
John could probably tell us more.

I'm not aware that police were working in any significant numbers for the bars in Fells Point, except the one you told me about--Rodos, I think.

The commissioner banned working in the bars because, I think, the city kept getting sued for excessive force, and, in at least one case, the company providing the cops sued the city alleging it should pick up the liability since the off-duties were in uniform. Plus the inherent conflict-of-interest. Are the cops ignoring their employers' serving minors, drunkenness , drugs, etc.?
Some bars, like the Preakness infield, engage in risky and unwise behavior to draw large crowds of young people, serve tehm endless cheap booze, etc., but expect the city to bail them out. When I worked in Southeast, we went to the liquor board several times for Surfside Sally's and another place on Broadway next to Rodos whose name I can't remember,--both of who had to sell their licenses because they were unable or unwilling to control their patrons.

And, yes, it sounds like they're getting more trouble from the patrons of those bars.

When I was a lieutenant working down there in the Point, for about 3 years, we would have to put A WHOLE SQUAD of foot officers down there beginning about 7pm on weekends (but things started getting going on Thursdays). You have to establish a reasonably heavy police presence early inthe evening, which remains thru the midnight shift change. And on top of those most of the Sector that patrolled that area, another 5 or so units would converge to handle the disorderliness and fights.

John said...

The Community Stabilization Unit has once again rolled over, and a new academy class is down by the Power Plant Live/ Iguana Cantina area. Sunday nights (Latin Night) has gotten much more popular and rowdy with the warmer weather.

In Federal Hill they routinely take 2-3 units out of service from 1-2:30 to block off Charles Street by Mother's/Mad River/Cross Street market. Other than a few disturbances things have been relatively quiet (as I say this a riot will occur next weekend). The major problem of late has been a pseduo PETA group protesting outside of Cork's. (anti- Fois Grae)

buzoncrime said...

Thanks, John, for the update!

I don't know what the Community Stabilization Unit is? Were you being snarky, or is that a real unit in the BPD? And what do you mean "rolled over"?

So, they're using an academy class to supplement patrols as part of their field training in the entertainment area. Hmmm.
When Buz was in the academy, we had to work the street on weekends, starting in our 7th week, with patrol officers in districts and in the Tactical Section. But we also got assigned a couple of times to the old Memorial Stadium and learned what a thankless task directing traffic was, along with the fact that some folks will simply disregard you and do what they want to do. (We hardly received any training in traffic direction, and very little supervision or support: "here; this is your corner, take care of the traffic". And we weren't even issued walkie-talkies. Didn't see one of them till I got my foot post in the Western along West Baltimore Street).

John---I got the sense that most of the bars in Federal Hill are pretty good as far as keeping the peace, and that the problem joints are mostly on Market Place, along with a couple in Fells Point. Do you agree with that?

Also--did you see my most recent post with an idea with how to make money at the Senator? Whaddaya think? Why should the downtown clubs make all the money?

John said...

The Community Stabilization Unit is a newer unit. (Probably less than 3 years old). They take around 1/2 of the graduates of the latest academy class and make them walk foot in designated areas until the next class graduates. It used to be areas on Pennsylvania Ave, or your latest hot spot. Now they walk in the Inner Harbor Thursday - Sunday, and a hot spot on Monday. Here's an old article about them, they're not identified by name though:

A lot of guys are displeased with the posting as they're not doing "real police work," and instead having to walk around in the elements, direct traffic and deal with rowdy drunks all night. On the other hand, some guys couldn't be happier. And now you get a walkie-talkie in the academy, and you get to keep it until you break it, or give them a reason to take it away. How the times have changed...

I agree that most problems come from the higher volume clubs, the Power Plant, Iguana, Bourbon Street, Rodo's, Latin Palace and SONAR to a lesser extent. A lot of the smaller establishments, particularly your Federal Hill/Canton Square bars don't have enough patrons to have a good riot, even if they wanted to. I still believe that it was in the neighborhoods best interest to have off-duty police working at all the bars for nuisance control and patron dispersement (moving the closing crowd along and the patrons who have been denied entry). A few weeks ago I observed a male walk out of a bar, walk down the street, pick up a potted plant, break it, then proceed to urinate. If an off duty officer was there, hopefully it would have been stopped. The other argument is, if the bar wasn't there, the patron wouldn't have been in the neighborhood anyway.

The Senator is an interesting problem. If you made the correct renovations, brought in a good promoter you could make a killing. Although I'm certain parking would be an issue. Opening a club in Baltimore is very hit or miss. Look at the 10 different clubs that have been where Club X was, the same with the Redwood Trust Location. I could certainly see the space being conducive to some sort of dance hall, or live concert venue. I think you should go for it Buz.

buzoncrime said...

Ok, John---I do remember reading about that practice of using the academy graduates a long time ago. Thanks for clarifying for me. I'll betcha the last couple of nights, as warm as it's been, have been real busy down in the entertainment areas.

And I understand Fells Point is having some kind of Pirate Thing. Alas, most of the action happens after Buz's bed-time. However, we'll make it down there one of these day; went to Fed Hill a while back, but didn't stay real late.