Stolen Appliances Recovered in Craigslist Police 'Buy'

Authorities recover a New Tampa homeowner's stolen washer and dryer.


The story of a New Tampa homeowner whose washer and dryer were stolen has a happy ending.

The appliances were taken from a Plantation Bay Drive property sometime between July 9 and July 28, according to Tampa Police. The homeowner later saw his items for sale on the website Craigslist, noticing the pictures were taken inside his residence.

Police posed as a buyer, contacted the seller, Jason Stearns, 38, of Land O’ Lakes, and set up an appointment to purchase the washer and dryer. When Stearns and Nicholas T. Messer, 32, of Holiday, arrived in a truck to deliver the items on July 30, police say they arrested the pair without incident.

Stearns and Messer were both charged with grand theft-third degree and dealing with stolen property. 

The stolen merchandise was recovered, police said.

John Stanley August 01, 2012 at 11:38 PM
I wonder which of these two were the brains behind this heist?
Concerned neighbor August 15, 2012 at 05:02 PM
I wish I knew, Jason Stearns stole almost everything my friend (disabled Vet) owned out of his house and got but a mere slap on the hand.


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