TV Stolen Minutes After Being Delivered to Bluemont Home

by ARLnow.com August 1, 2011 at 10:35 am 8,255 120 Comments

It took just three minutes for a flat-screen TV to be stolen from a Bluemont front yard after it was dropped off by a delivery service. Now, the victim is fighting back online.

The N. Kensington Street homeowner posted surveillance video of the incident on YouTube, in the hopes that someone will be able to identify the alleged thief.

The video purports to show a FedEx employee delivering the TV at 12:21 p.m. on Wednesday, July 20. At 12:24 p.m., a man runs up to the TV and hauls it off, possibly to a vehicle seen slowing down during the delivery.

In addition to asking for help identifying the man in the video, the victim is questioning why the pricey TV was dropped off without a signature.

Screen capture via YouTube

  • BerryBerryCold

    “…the victim is questioning why the pricey TV was dropped off without a signature.”

    Few thoughts on this:

    Did the shipper send it signature required? Did the homeowner have a release form on record with Fedex?

    • ESTSRN8

      Even if victim was home he or she wouldn’t know if was delivered since driver did not even knock on door or ring bell. Aren’t they at least supposed to let you know they delivered?

      Thanks for posting ARLnow, makes me rethink my just leave it at the door policy. Looks like a possible poll question!

      • Donna

        Exactly. I seriously cannot believe the dude didn’t knock or ring the bell. He just ran up and left it there. WTF.

        • Mkt Common

          I’ve heard on Consumerist, that FedEx Ground delivery is really a contracted-out service, so the delivery standards (as in truck drivers following procedure) aren’t the same as if shipped via their fast services. I wonder if this TV was shipped FedEx Ground?

          • Marc

            FedEx Ground service is certainly low quality compared to awesome regular FedEx. Last FedEx ground delivery I had they pitched my package over an 6-ft. fence & right into a puddle.

  • You would think FedEx would hold something like this and require you to go to their depot to get it if nobody is home and can sign for it. Hopefully this evidence helps a new TV get delivered at no cost to the victim.

    • NPGMBR

      I would have assumed that drivers were supposed to alert the recipient i.e. knock or ring the door bell to ensure someone was home to receive the product. Otherwise, they put it back on the truck and take it to the depot where the recipient can pick it up.

      Its always been my experience that when a company ships an expensive item they always require signature for delivery, however, thats an assumption.

      • bluemontguy

        No kidding – the video clearly shows that the delivery guy didn’t even bother to ring the doorbell or knock.

  • Rosslynite

    How many homes do you know that are equipped with their own surveillance cameras?

    • charlie

      exactly. people in my neighborhood who have surveillance cameras (there are three of them) are the meanest SOBs on the street. no one likes them.
      glad someone got the tv.

      • bluemontguy

        I know this guy. He’s not a jerk at all. He’s been a victim of crime before, that’s why he has a camera. Don’t blame the victim.

        • charlie

          ok. i don’t know the guy.
          here are the surveillance camera people in our neighborhood:
          1. drives porsche 911 and doesn’t stop at 4-way, because, I quote “the other people stop”; no Arlington registration on $100,000 of cars parked in driveway; installs basketball hoop in street and tells peopel to move their cars when they get hit by his punk kids.
          2. calls police whenever someone non-white walks by; refuses to adjust camera because mother of young children believe (rightfuly so) that it is also filming her children playing in her yard and it freaks them out; sells house and removes foundation plants because he sold the house, not the plants.

          so back to the point, who has a full service surveillance system?

          • bluemontguy

            It’s not a full system, just one camera. And the home is by no means a mansion, nor is his car a Porsche.

            So now you know two jerks in your neighborhood with cameras and one nice guy in mine with a camera. Maybe the problem is that your neighborhood is full of jerks. 😉

          • charlie

            hmmm. i do live in 22207 so maybe you have a point.
            actually we got rid of one of the jerks and he lives in bluemont now, but north of Wilson.
            we are thrilled he’s gone. almost had a party over it.
            so that makes bluemont 1-1 tie. 🙂

          • Rob Richards

            I’m Rob Richards. I live with my wife and two young children and we’ve been subject to two other thefts besides this one over the past year. The first was a brand new bike (mine) that was snagged out of my garage about three days after i bought it. It was never ridden. I actually didn’t discover the theft until my 4 year old daughter and I went out to take a ride (on her new bike too, thank you thieves for not being interested in a little pink Barbie bike!) and I had to fake that I had to cancel the ride for an emergency. (Didn’t want her to know the real reason why.)

            Then, on this past Christmas Eve my car window was busted in for a small leather briefcase that I forgot on my back seat, just that once (laptop inside). My car wasn’t even on the street but up in my carport. That was a real nice xmas present from my fellow man, and to boot, my insurance company charged me two $500 deductibles ($1K) since the car damage and theft are considered two policies. “Yay insurance companies!!” So I installed this video system in a futile attempt to deter more theft of the stuff that I work hard for.

            About the delivery, I remember coming home this day thinking that I’d be sure to find a note on my door to go pick up my brand new TV at the FedEx facility. So I reviewed the tape and saw the crime you see on this web page above. Many online retail businesses may offer you shipping options, but many don’t seem to include the option of requesting a signature, and WOOT.com didn’t offer me one. But they did reimburse me pretty quickly.

            One thing though, it doesn’t make me feel any better about some dude walking up to my front door and just grabbing what he wants. I don’t wish this on anyone else either, but these things are happening more and more so I’m afraid many of you will soon know this feeling. Fight the fight! 🙂

            Hope this answer questions.

          • charlie

            Rob, i’m sorry it happened. there is nothing worse than things being stolen from your castle. I totally understand. Seriously, I do.

          • R.Griffon

            No, you’re certainly NOT sorry nor do you understand given any of your other comments here.

            You know what kind of people have video cameras? People who have been victims before and want to protect themselves or at least get some small measure of justice in the future.

            And very few delivery companies will give you the exact time of your delivery, and many people don’t have the kind of jobs that let you leave mid-day anyways. That’s why delivery companies are supposed to, gee I don’t know … GET A SIGNATURE maybe?

            Keep blaming the victims.

            Rob: I’m genuinely sorry, and hope that punk ends up in jail where he belongs. I’ll even donate if you decide to post a reward. We had something stolen from our back yard recently (which is fenced in), and I’m definitely going to invest in cameras. And I’ll make sure to point one at the street to hopefully get license plates too.

          • charlie

            ron, of all people.
            i love it when people complain about people being nasty and then they themselves are nasty.
            ron, how DARE YOU question whether or not I”m sorry.
            I am sorry it got stolen and feel bad for him.
            I still think it is ridiculous to get expensive stuff delivered to your house.

          • Banksy

            Pot, meet kettle. Sorry, Charlie, your neighbors are probably surprised that *you* don’t have a surveillance system…

          • BlvdManorOwner

            Not everyone who owns a camera is a jerk 😉

            I have a HD quality camera set up outside of my house. I wouldn’t call it a “full service surveillance” system.

            The reason I got the camera is because someone has keyed my car (while sitting on my driveway) about 3-4 times. We filed a police report, but there’s not much they can do. We almost feel like we’re being targeted for whatever reason.

            Its so small, the neighbors don’t even know its there. We live near Bluemont park too.

          • Sam

            I have a similar problem with a neighbor. May I ask what type did you buy?

          • BlvdManorOwner

            We bought the Logitech Alert 750E:


            We like it overall; however, there are a few bad things – poor video quality during the night, no time stamp on video and it does not have optical zoom.

          • KalashniKEV

            Nice… Bobby Rich, what kind of system captured your video?

          • CW

            Wait, you mean ACPD didn’t help you go catch the crook? What a surprise!

          • KalashniKEV

            If he double parked while running up to the door, they would have got him!

          • AJ

            not sure why removing plants after selling the house makes the guy a jerk – he probably specified that they didn’t convey.

            freaking the kids out, though, is pretty jerky behavior.

      • wow Charlie – that’s really un-necessary and really ugly.

  • charlie

    this person clearly has a problem. aren’t there already two packages sitting on the front steps?
    Who orders stuff and has it shipped to their house when they know they won’t be home?

    • Sunny617

      Good grief…blaming the victim? You’re ridiculous. You probably kick injured puppies because they had the nerve to hurt themselves.

    • Andrew

      So everyone is supposed to have FedEx/UPS/USPS deliver only when they are home? Does not seem feasible.

      • bluemontguy

        Everyone is supposed to have them deliver expensive televisions when they are home.

        • david

          Again, how do you know the guy isn’t home when this happened? There was no knock or doorbell so he could have been inside for all you know.

          • bluemontguy

            Actually, he said on his comments about it on the neighborhood listserv that he was home at the time.

        • BoredHouseWife


    • charlie

      can we talk about personal accountability please?

      It is utterly idiotic stupid and dumb to have a high value electronic delivered to your house if you are not there.

      AND given that there are already TWO packages sitting on the front porch it would seem that this person gets a decent amount of stuff delivered and is not home right now or hasn’t been in a few hours maybe.

      It is like my neighbors who complain that there IPOD and GARMIN are stolen from their car when they leave it unlocked and windows opened.

      We live in an urban area. Yeah, it sucks, but don’t get expensive stuff delivered unless you KNOW YOU ARE HOME.

      • Donna

        You know, I’ve had a computer delivered to my home and I took the day off that they told me they were delivering it. However, the day before the scheduled delivery, for just shits and giggles, I checked online tracking and well lookie there, my computer was out for delivery that morning. So I had to call in to work to make sure I was there a day early.

        Purchasers aren’t usually the ones not on the ball. It’s either the merchant or the delivery service.
        I highly doubt this man was the cause of this crime.

        Nice victim blaming though.

      • Donna

        So there is no personal accountability for the dude that’s actually stealing?? You know breaking the law?

        I’m seriously baffled by your laying the blame on the customer/homeowner.

      • charlie

        i’m sorry people are ranting about me blaming the victim.

        bottom line: don’t have things delivered to your house if you aren’t home. this guy just had $800 in cash dropped of at his front door. craigslist and ebay are full of stolen stuff. couldn’t make it easier.

      • bluemontguy

        I think he said on the neighborhood listserv that he was there.

        But it doesn’t matter – the Fedex guy didn’t even bother to check to see if he was there. Didn’t even ring the bell. He should have not delivered it if nobody was there to sign.

  • Marshall

    The suspect is clearly Eminem.

    • Tabby

      Nah, too tall and too scrawny. Em has muscly arms. This guy has Paris Hilton arms!

    • Rob Richards


    • Sean

      I think it was actually a Woot.com employee. How do you think they sell their stuff so cheap?

      Answer: They steal it back and sell it again. They just don’t usually get caught.

  • JimPB

    How prevalent have surveillance cameras become
    (a) for businesses, inside, outside (bldg. security; parking area);
    (b) for government sites, e.g., office bldgs., schools, fixed work sites, parks, roads, inside govt. vehicles), and
    (c) for individuals?

    What has been the experience in operating, maintaining and using surveillance cameras and associated equipment?

    What data are there on deterrence and on success in meaningfully identifying offenders?

    • Maria

      Why is every comment you leave a poll?

      Does anyone ever answer these questions?

      How are you today?

  • othersideoftheriver

    He could have been home. Maybe he works from home and doesn’t have an office to send it to. Maybe he’s on the car-free diet and can’t drive to work just to pick it up. With no ring or knock, though, even if he were hitting refresh on the FedEx out for delivery screen, the thief nabbed the tv almost instantly.

    I’ve had any number of things arrive signature only when they could have been left alone on the porch just fine (baby diapers, for one). A tv should have been signature required, no doubt, but in my experience, you don’t always get to choose the method of delivery.

    • Skeptical

      I can’t count the number of times I have been in my home and had a deliveryman “stealth” my porch with a “delivery attempted” post-it note, never mind leaving the package silently if it is not a big enough deal to require a signature. No thefts so far, but I always appreciate it when the UPS or FedEx guy KNOCKS, it only takes two seconds longer.

  • Not Laughing

    3 minutes is kind of funny, in a slapstick movie sort of way.

    • Rob Richards

      I agree.

  • Lou

    I’m amazed how fast some people drive on that side street.

    • Donna

      I think the tape was sped up for the latter part of it.

  • waycroft-woodlawn

    This is also happening in our neighborhood. Several packages were stolen after being left at the door. While it appears that getting a flat screen delivered without a signature or notification by the driver is not smart, we all need to be vigilant in our neighborhoods and note any suspicious behavior, including license plate numbers. You never know, you might be able to help catch the thieves.

  • Evil

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the FedEx man is somehow involved! Just seems all too fishy to me

    • Donna

      I kinda got that impression too. He VERY quickly threw that TV up there and left just as quickly with no knocking or ringing.

  • Tre

    Is this the parallel universe where the Irish have world domination and all roads are green?

  • Scott Davis

    Should’ve used UPS.

    • G::TheNativeArlingtonian

      No, because they leave your packages sitting on your stoop in the rain with no plastic cover for them. The customer service offered by the delivery services is quickly deteriorating.

      • The Duck of Death

        Agreed. I ordered a cake and UPS left it out in the rain. I didn’t think that I could take it, because it took so long to bake it.

        • FrenchyB

          So you’re a writer? Letters and such?

        • Like

          Like Like Like

        • OtherJoe

          That’s a shame; you’ll probably never have that recipe again.

          • Sue

            Oh no

        • othersideoftheriver


  • Joe

    The word is getting about regarding the presence of Arlington Police, or lack thereof, in the County.

    Although today I just saw three Arlington cruisers all parked in the Westover Strip…one of them getting treats at Toby’s Homemade Ice Cream, natch.

    • Lou

      There was a drunk/passed out guy at the bus stop across from 7-11 this morning. He was also there yesterday around 5, screaming at cars and throwing around various racial epithets. When I saw him this morning it looked like he had slept there. I hope the cops took care of him if he was still there.

      Speaking of cops, Friday night about half the force was going full lights and sirens west on Wilson towards Glebe around 9:00. Anybody know what that was all about?

      • CW

        Happy hour was ending at one of the Ballston Common bars?

        • Lou

          Well, this was actually right in front of the mall, and they were headed to Glebe and beyond. I didn’t even bother to look if they turned or went straight through on Wilson. So I guess either a riot at Melting Pot or a brawl at El Ranchero are possibilities.

          • CW

            Sometimes they just race down there to hang out with their friends at the ACFD station across from McDonald’s. No joke; I’ve seen it before.

          • G::TheNativeArlingtonian

            Don’t blame the ACFD… the stations are open and often times they also house a small depot for filling county vehicles with gas. The police wander in and kill time drinking coffee. Most of the time the ACFD guys just want them to get out of their hair.

          • CW

            No blame whatsoever. Just saying I’ve seen them down that way.

      • Joe

        This was about 11 this morning. This is where the homeless can be helpful. You pick him up at 8, do “post-arrest investigation”, and burn off the rest of the morning. Nice work if you can get it.

      • KalashniKEV

        Was he a drunk party goer, or a Bum?

        The Bums are in charge in Arlington. When they get drunk and menace people, it’s part of their alternative lifestyle… I’m sure he’s probably nearby doing the exact same thing right now.

        • Lou

          He appeared to be a middle-aged professional drinker, probably cast out of The Forest. Not to disparage The Forest, the regulars there don’t act out in public like this guy was, and I didn’t recognize him from the neighborhood. I’m not sure what he’s doing now, but around 6:30 this morning he was sitting on the bench across from 7-11, sleeping in what I would guess was a puddle of his own pee.

          • KalashniKEV

            Maybe he lost his job and was auditioning for a spot on The Real World – ASPAN.

    • Actually, they were out at a call at Toby’s.

      • Lou

        Drunk guy begging for ice cream?

      • O.C.

        Curious ArlNow, how do you confirm that they were out at a call at Toby’s? Do you call up Toby’s and ask? Do you monitor the scanner to learn this? Does ACPD have some sort of contemporaneous record of calls that you consult? Or do you call Crystal Nosal or someone like that, and that ACPD spokesperson tells you, “Oh yes, they were out on a call”?

        The first three scenarios would be proof of a legitimate call. The Nosal-type comment–not so much.

        • Yes, heard a call go out on the radio.

          • Dan


    • KalashniKEV

      +1 ACPD operates only in reactive mode. The only times they are proactive is when it comes to revenue generating activity. They need to learn community policing techniques and start enforcing our laws. Their stance on Secure Communities was very telling on how they feel about the safety of citizens here.

  • charlie

    i’m guessing 5th Road North and North Kensington.

    you can’t drive fast on that street if you wanted to with its extra larges speed humpsy-whumpsies.

    this is a huge problem in ballston. UPS won’t leave packages at a townhouse between Washington and Fairfax. not there, too bad. back it goes.

    didn’t surveillance camers last summer pick up the tire slasher on Culpeper Street?

  • ArlWoman

    Tomorrow is “National Night Out”. All across the country, extra police will be in neighborhoods meeting and greeting and fostering good communications. (It lowers crime.) Arlington is doing nothing. . .
    . .

    • John Barcroft

      Barcroft organized an event having an event; police captain is coming.

      • Southeast Ben

        Maybe they thought it meant going to a Nationals game and all of the local PD will be at the ballpark as they face the Atlanta Braves?

  • JamesE

    I was going to buy a new TV with all this stolen bank money but I think I will try this method first.

  • CW

    Two thoughts:

    1) Props to this guy for having a better camera than all the banks that have gotten hit in the last couple weeks. I bet it will help him catch the crook and probably cost him a couple hundred dollars at the absolute most.

    2) Amazon white glove service is the way to go with this kind of purchase. I bought a big TV through amazon a couple years ago and they included it. A locally-contracted shipping company schedules an exact time to come by, then they bring it in and set it up. You have to actually verify that the thing works before they will even leave. Well worth taking an hour off work.

    • bluemontguy

      Armed with this video, he got the TV company to send him a new one.

      • Rob Richards

        No but they reimbursed me right away. WOOT.com offers one deal a day until all are sold, so I did lose out on a GREAT deal. Haven’t metioned this, but this 42″ LCD 1080i only cost me (or would have cost me) $379. That’s the sadest part of all this! 🙂

        • G

          Woot.com is awesome.

        • Loocy

          They were selling a security camera system the other day too.

          • Rob Richards

            Um Loocy, where do you think I got this surveillance system?? Yes, I’m not kidding, LOL! Actually, if you noticed there was 6 camera system the other day on woot but I bought the one that I have from woot around the end of June I think.

            Recap for everyone else: I bought a surveillance system from woot.com and then a TV from them a few weeks later. The surveillance system caught a guy on video stealing the TV, it’s too darn funny to believe- but the news guys really didn’t push that part of the story.

        • bluemontguy

          Thanks for coming here and clarifying, Rob, I’ve been relaying info secondhand.

  • ArlWoman

    Let me guess . . .the FedEx truck was followed (maybe unknowingly) untill the criminals saw something they wanted.

    • bluemontguy


    • ArlingtonNative

      Alternative … FedEx guy txts his buddies with days high $ value items, where & approx when he will deliver.
      They follow along behind and pick up.
      I’d see the FedEx guy’s no knock/ring as a step to insure the resident doesn’t know the package has been delivered.
      Nice little way to supplement the income.

      • bluemontguy

        Losers following him around is more plausible. If FedEx guy wanted to steal, which is not that likely anyway, he’d just take the merch home instead if getting some losers to take it. Much simpler and less risky and no cameras involved.

        • Scott Davis

          You think the FedEx guy knew there were camaras there?

  • Meh..

    Is that a TOGA he’s wearing??

  • BB

    Please tell me the company did not ship it in the original box, with the picture of the TV on the outside.

    • BoredHouseWife

      Well, I do not think it takes a genius to figure out that was a tv/monitor

    • Rob Richards

      Yes, BIG GIANT BEAUTIFUL PICTURE OF LCD TV RIGHT ON THE SIDE, no siggy, no ringy the doorbell. F me!

      • Mr. Man

        I hope they bust the worthless little [email protected]!t who did this to you!

        • KalashniKEV

          They should put 5 drops of sulfuric acid in each of his eyes and then let him keep the TV… since Mr. Richards already has a new one in bound.

  • Stew Magnuson

    I don’t think the FedEx person has to be deliberately involved. A small time crook just has to shadow one of their trucks, and wait for them to dropoff something expensive looking.
    The drivers should be looking in their rear view mirror on these sidestreets making sure they aren’t being followed.

  • NoVapologist

    That one Subaru drives by like 4 times in 5 minutes.

  • charlie

    we all pay for this —
    higher prices
    feeling less secure
    run on surveillance video cameras.

  • YTK

    Left it at the door without getting a signature? They owe that homeowner a personally delivered replacement!!!

  • Fedex isn’t the only one who doesn’t knock

    UPS.doesn’t knock either unless a signature is required. If a signature isn’t specified they just leave things at your door. I have been working from home several times and seen the truck pull up, drop off a package which I heard land on my front doorstep, and drive away without any attempt to alert me that it was there.

    • Loocy

      UPS usually does ring my doorbell, and leaves. FedEx doesn’t ring unless they need a signature.

  • CEW

    Why does ARLNow note that the video “purports to show…”? This isn’t a court of law. The video shows what the video shows.

    • CW

      Lol, yeah. The qualifying statements have gotten a little out of control around here.

      See any bank robbery article…”Police are purported to have received a report that what is believed to be a bank may have been robbed by what appeared to be a man purportedly wearing clothes. A witness may have stated that the alleged suspect potentially ran in what was described as potentially being a direction between north and north-northeast”.

    • Claude Elsinore

      Yeah, right – nobody would EVER alter a video

      “It has a time-code stamp. Those are very difficult to fake”

      “Just because I don’t know what it is doesn’t mean I’m lying”

      • CEW

        If there is a fear that the video is altered, then you don’t rely on it. Can’t have it both ways.

  • Sean

    Does anyone else think Charlie sounds overly defensive?

    @charlie: Mr. Richards seems like a nice guy. Just return the TV and I’m sure they’ll reduce the charges.

    • charlie

      you get points for that.

  • Strat Zervos

    Love the music-bed he used in the video. At least he seems to have a sense of humor about his loss. 🙂

  • R.Griffon

    Is there some sort of Crime Stoppers program, where you could post a reward? And what’s the best way to advertise?

    Somebody HAS to know a lanky young guy with a car like that who just happened to get a new 42″ TV around that time.

  • bluemontlocal

    Kinda seems like there was a case car that first appears at 12:21:45…they call their buddy in the white panel van and make their second pass at 12:24:00 and likely park and let out the thief. He passes by the van at 12:24:29 and seemingly acknowledges them (or maybe it’s my imagination). Swipes the TV, runs where they both parked and loads in the van. They leave the same direction they both originally came at 12:25:28.

    The car kinda looks like a late model (90’s) Mazda, Honda or Subaru…either way, it’s a small neighborhood, definitely keeping my eyes peeled.

    Anyone else find it weird how the FedEx driver looked back over his shoulder as he left…

  • Sam

    don’t expect Arlington County PD to be of any help with this, better off calling Advanced Towing..

  • nota again

    Not surprised about FEDEX leaving the item on the porch and no knock. It is amazing to me how FEDEX gets away with parking as they do on any street and how Arlington does not ticket them; dont want to loose the business. Someone in Memphis, TN needs to check the driving records of its deliverymen.


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