Stolen Greg Black mouthpiece

ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Stolen Greg Black mouthpiece

Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Thu May 25, 2017 6:59 am

As a lot of you guys know I have been working with Greg to make a 1 5/16G mouthpiece. Well it is done and I was sending one back to him to use as a template for the rest. It went missing via USPS. Well someone found it on eBay.
http://m.ebay.com/itm/Greg-Black-Musica ... Ciid%253A1
That is the listing. Now my question... what do I do next? I have sent a message to the seller and just asked for the mouthpiece back and that I will buy it back if necessary. I also contacted eBay and all they can do is shut down his account until he gives it back to me. Should I do that?
Or should I just win the auction even if it means paying full price again?
Thanks,
Zac
ttf_kbiggs
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Post by ttf_kbiggs » Thu May 25, 2017 7:15 am

I'm not an attorney, but this sounds like a complicated legal question. I'm sure ebay and USPS have some complicated rules and regs about possession and proof, which could get messy and drag the whole thing out...

However, you can ask yourself: What is most important to you? Do you want the mouthpiece returned so you and Greg can continue collaborating on this project, or do you want the person who is selling the mpc to pay some money (have some pain inflicted) for the trouble that you've experienced (your suffering)? 
ttf_sonicsilver
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Post by ttf_sonicsilver » Thu May 25, 2017 7:29 am

Report it to the police.

I assume you have some correspondence about it between Greg Black and yourself. And there's the small detail of the piece having your name stamped on it...
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Thu May 25, 2017 7:42 am

Yeah I just want it back. I don't care if the guy gets in trouble. Next step is the police!
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Thu May 25, 2017 7:52 am

Ebay offered to shut down the auction. That doesn't help me get the piece back.
ttf_bubbachet
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Post by ttf_bubbachet » Thu May 25, 2017 7:52 am

Report the theft to the police, file a report, and have an officer report the item stolen to eBay. They will shut down auctions immediately when reported by law enforcement.


ttf_tbathras
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Post by ttf_tbathras » Thu May 25, 2017 7:57 am

At least this thing *literally* has your name on it.
ttf_crazytrombonist505
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Post by ttf_crazytrombonist505 » Thu May 25, 2017 8:18 am

If you want to avoid a hassle, you might just try to bid on and win the auction. I know that seems very unfair to you to have to spend money on a piece that was stolen from you, but you may just want to get it back quickly and be done with this whole thing. Having eBay end the auction won't gaurantee that you'll get your item back anyway. Trying to contact the seller about doing a buy it now instead of the auction might work (if you offer enough) but the item already has been bid on and the seller may not want to end the auction. Guess you could always try though.

Just my two cents.

Good luck getting it back!

Zach
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Thu May 25, 2017 8:21 am

^that is my thinking...
ttf_Matt K
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Post by ttf_Matt K » Thu May 25, 2017 8:28 am

You could potentially win it and then file a claim with PayPal or something but as I mentioend on facebook, law enforcement might have a less underhanded way of dealing with the situation.
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Thu May 25, 2017 9:44 am

PayPal was never involved though...
ttf_Matt K
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Post by ttf_Matt K » Thu May 25, 2017 9:51 am

I mean if you decide to purchase it from this guy.
ttf_bubbachet
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Post by ttf_bubbachet » Thu May 25, 2017 10:04 am

Might help to remind the seller he's complicit in the receipt of stolen property...with a case number and contact information for the local officer handling your case.
ttf_oslide
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Post by ttf_oslide » Thu May 25, 2017 10:52 am

You've invested a lot of time in this mouthpiece and thus it' worth much more than the nominal price?
I would buy it in order to secure it and THEN take legal action. If you can prove that it was stolen from you, you should be able to get your money back.

ttf_Dan Hine
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Post by ttf_Dan Hine » Thu May 25, 2017 11:23 am

I may be alone in this but I'll say it anyway.

I've received items in the mail before where the packaging was all but obliterated.  Seriously, all that was left was a sad remnant of an envelope that happened to have the address and postage.  Contents lost and/or destroyed.  The USPS auctions off items that are undeliverable, unclaimed, damaged, and claim-paid. 

All you KNOW right now is that the person who has your mouthpiece is not the person you sent it to.  That doesn't mean it's stolen - at least not by the ebay seller.  If you suspect that it was stolen and want to pursue that route, file a police report.

Otherwise, just win the auction.


ttf_jbeckett
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Post by ttf_jbeckett » Thu May 25, 2017 12:17 pm

Bad part about it: I bid on it, in hopes it was legit, before I knew it was the missing piece.
From here, you can't do a lot. Legally, possession is 9/10ths. It sucks.
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Thu May 25, 2017 12:35 pm

According to eBay they can cancel the auction and the person's account until they return the mouthpiece to me. That being said.. that doesn't guarantee that I get it back. So I am just going to buy the mouthpiece and hope no one snipes it from me.
It is unfair that I have to buy something that is mine but hey it happens.
ttf_jbeckett
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Post by ttf_jbeckett » Thu May 25, 2017 12:48 pm

It is. Did he offer you a buy it now deal? It's amazing people sell items that aren't theirs. Morals have gone.
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Thu May 25, 2017 1:20 pm

The buy it now was gone by the time I saw it. I tried contacting the seller to see if I can just give him a large finders fees for it.
ttf_Pre59
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Post by ttf_Pre59 » Thu May 25, 2017 1:49 pm

Just make sure that you leave negative feedback and make it clear that the seller is dealing in stolen goods if the 'piece is lost for good.
ttf_jbeckett
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Post by ttf_jbeckett » Thu May 25, 2017 1:51 pm

fayetteville ga police department needs to contact ebay and get his contact info. then theres a warrant for stolen property. they sell a lot on ebay and no seller wants to get a "stolen" rating on their feedback.  that will get it returned back to you promptly.
ttf_Euphanasia
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Post by ttf_Euphanasia » Thu May 25, 2017 5:10 pm

The seller seems to be a liquidator of miscellaneous merchandise. Sometimes they pick things up at USPS auctions, or through other legitimate means. I wouldn't be so quick to assume that he actually stole it.

There will come a day when you'll see someone selling a couple of raw brass, highly-polished Mount Vernon 12Cs, a few handslide braces, and some bell braces, all of which were in a package that got lost on its way to Anderson Plating. USPS couldn't find them for me, but someone has them. I got $50 in insurance out of the deal...  Image
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Thu May 25, 2017 5:13 pm

Image sorry man!
It was stolen from me in some manner (lost by PO) and I just want to get it back. Even if it means just buying it.
ttf_Dan Hine
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Post by ttf_Dan Hine » Thu May 25, 2017 5:36 pm

Quote from: Euphanasia on May 25, 2017, 05:10PMThe seller seems to be a liquidator of miscellaneous merchandise. Sometimes they pick things up at USPS auctions, or through other legitimate means. I wouldn't be so quick to assume that he actually stole it.



Sounds familiar... Image
ttf_Euphanasia
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Post by ttf_Euphanasia » Thu May 25, 2017 5:57 pm

Quote from: HouBassTrombone on May 25, 2017, 05:13PMImage sorry man!
It was stolen from me in some manner (lost by PO) and I just want to get it back. Even if it means just buying it.

Sorry, I wasn't referring to you. I was referring to people who were recommending that you leave negative feedback or stating that the seller was immoral. We don't know that the seller is unwilling to return it, unless the seller has responded to you already. He's had less than 24 hours to respond.

As Dan pointed out, he said pretty much the same thing in an earlier post.



ttf_kbiggs
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Post by ttf_kbiggs » Thu May 25, 2017 7:25 pm

Again,

Quote from: kbiggs on May 25, 2017, 07:15AM...ask yourself: What is most important to you? Do you want the mouthpiece returned so you and Greg can continue collaborating on this project, or do you want the person who is selling the mpc to pay some money (have some pain inflicted) for the trouble that you've experienced (your suffering)? 

It sounds like you want the mpc back and then, if possible, find out what happened and maybe get some money back. Focus on that. One thing at a time. Buy the mouthpiece; get it back in your hands; then file any claims or legal action.
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Thu May 25, 2017 7:38 pm

Yep! I am waiting on doing anything until I hear from the seller. After that I will hopefully just win the auction. Never used eBay before though.
ttf_Euphanasia
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Post by ttf_Euphanasia » Thu May 25, 2017 8:33 pm

Anyone who has already bid can cancel their bids. That would lower the price.
ttf_sonicsilver
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Post by ttf_sonicsilver » Fri May 26, 2017 12:45 am

Quote from: Dan Hine on May 25, 2017, 11:23AM
I've received items in the mail before where the packaging was all but obliterated.  Seriously, all that was left was a sad remnant of an envelope that happened to have the address and postage.  Contents lost and/or destroyed.  The USPS auctions off items that are undeliverable, unclaimed, damaged, and claim-paid. 

All you KNOW right now is that the person who has your mouthpiece is not the person you sent it to.  That doesn't mean it's stolen - at least not by the ebay seller. 

That's a very good point.

If I'd acquired a mouthpiece in good faith and a seller approached me saying it was theirs, with his name stamped on it (perhaps not Roberts, Premru or Pryor...) I'd be very willing to return it as long as I saw some proof of ownership, paperwork about the loss etc.
ttf_schlitzbeer
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Post by ttf_schlitzbeer » Fri May 26, 2017 1:34 am

Zach has title to the mouthpiece via paperwork and his name is on the mouthpiece. Unknowingly selling stolen merchandise means nothing. As the mail was used, its federal level stuff. File a police report, send a copy to a postal inspector, eBay to shutdown the auction, and pay the seller a finders fee. Don't need to make it more complicated.

Heck, I've done storage unit auctions where the stuff I got was stolen. Stuff gets stolen in the mail all of the time, and it's rising with identity theft. When I haven't fought a claim, I've settled with auctioneers and the rightful owners. Most people like to do the right things.
ttf_sonicsilver
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Post by ttf_sonicsilver » Fri May 26, 2017 2:34 am

Quote from: schlitzbeer on May 26, 2017, 01:34AMUnknowingly selling stolen merchandise means nothing.

But as Dan Hine already pointed out, we don't know that the item was stolen, rather than merely lost in the post and acquired in good faith by the ebay seller in a USPS sell off or similar.
ttf_schlitzbeer
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Post by ttf_schlitzbeer » Fri May 26, 2017 3:04 am

Quote from: sonicsilver on May 26, 2017, 02:34AMBut as Dan Hine already pointed out, we don't know that the item was stolen, rather than merely lost in the post and acquired in good faith by the ebay seller in a USPS sell off or similar.

eBay has already offered to shutdown the auction. I can file a police report online in Bremerton, and have a report w/case number, to hand to a postal inspector in 1 business day.
ttf_Dan Hine
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Post by ttf_Dan Hine » Fri May 26, 2017 3:37 am

Image
ttf_schlitzbeer
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Post by ttf_schlitzbeer » Fri May 26, 2017 4:29 am

Shirley, I picked the wrong week to stop snorting glue. Don't eat the fish.
ttf_jbeckett
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Post by ttf_jbeckett » Fri May 26, 2017 9:57 am

gents-
i was the guy who let zack know about the piece being on ebay, and had already bid, when i saw his classified advertisement.  I contacted the seller, without zach knowing (hopefully not getting on zack's nerves at all, because id surely like one of those 1-5/16th pieces), hoping the seller would be reasonable, and sell it back to zack for what they paid for it (which i am sure wasn't squat because they buy items from the usps in "lots") plus a finders fee.  seller said, "no".  Since they are told that what they are buying is "legal" to buy even though it is someone elses property, they saw no reason to do so. in other words: they're douchebags.  pardon the language.

i withdrew my bid. it didn't effect the price at all, unless everyone bidding is going to do the same. 
another bad part is that the usps may or may not have paid out an insurance claim, then found the piece, then auctioned it off, and most likely (almost assuredly) didn't get as much for it as they would have if they would have contacted its rightful owner.

this pisses me off as I've had items lost before, tracking said it was stuck somewhere, then ordered a replacement, and received the original item. Then I sent the item back when the replacement arrived.  i assume it doesn't work that way anymore.  i guess people aren't moral, especially when it comes to something they make money off of.  and the average cost per piece at a usps auction is...

wait for it...

about the cost of a postage stamp.

id ask ebay to let you contact they bidders and shut the auction down, and freeze the sellers account. then contact the seller, via phone or email, and offer them a fair price.  evidently, from how the seller spoke, this isnt the first time this has happened.

JBeckett



ttf_Blackthorne
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Post by ttf_Blackthorne » Fri May 26, 2017 10:16 am

Quote from: jbeckett on May 26, 2017, 09:57AMgents-
i was the guy who let zack know about the piece being on ebay, and had already bid, when i saw his classified advertisement.  I contacted the seller, without zach knowing (hopefully not getting on zack's nerves at all, because id surely like one of those 1-5/16th pieces), hoping the seller would be reasonable, and sell it back to zack for what they paid for it (which i am sure wasn't squat because they buy items from the usps in "lots") plus a finders fee.  seller said, "no".  Since they are told that what they are buying is "legal" to buy even though it is someone elses property, they saw no reason to do so. in other words: they're douchebags.  pardon the language.

i withdrew my bid. it didn't effect the price at all, unless everyone bidding is going to do the same. 
another bad part is that the usps may or may not have paid out an insurance claim, then found the piece, then auctioned it off, and most likely (almost assuredly) didn't get as much for it as they would have if they would have contacted its rightful owner.

this pisses me off as I've had items lost before, tracking said it was stuck somewhere, then ordered a replacement, and received the original item. Then I sent the item back when the replacement arrived.  i assume it doesn't work that way anymore.  i guess people aren't moral, especially when it comes to something they make money off of.  and the average cost per piece at a usps auction is...

wait for it...

about the cost of a postage stamp.

id ask ebay to let you contact they bidders and shut the auction down, and freeze the sellers account. then contact the seller, via phone or email, and offer them a fair price.  evidently, from how the seller spoke, this isnt the first time this has happened.

JBeckett




Given that we now know that the seller isn't willing to do the right thing, I'd say it's definitely time to play hardball.  You shouldn't have to pay to get what's rightfully yours, and someone who has clearly shown that he wants to profit off of your misfortune doesn't deserve to profit from it. 
ttf_Posaunus
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Post by ttf_Posaunus » Fri May 26, 2017 10:54 am

Unless Zachary lost track of this mouthpiece quite a while ago (doubtful - he was eager to get it from Greg Black, so was on top of the shipment in a timely manner), this mouthpiece was not legally obtained by the eBay seller in a USPS auction.  USPS does not auction off their lost stuff for months after they collect it.  The eBay seller surely has no record of purchasing it.  The mouthpiece was, in effect, stolen.  This is a criminal case that should be pursued by the authorities.   

Good luck, Zachary. 
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Fri May 26, 2017 12:32 pm

Greg was supposed to get it April 10th.
ttf_Doug Elliott
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Post by ttf_Doug Elliott » Fri May 26, 2017 2:10 pm

Was there insurance on it?  Priority Mail automatic insurance?
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Fri May 26, 2017 4:11 pm

^ Yep. The automatic $50.
ttf_Doug Elliott
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Post by ttf_Doug Elliott » Fri May 26, 2017 6:13 pm

Then the post office owned it to do as they saw fit when it was found.  You were paid.  You can't say it was stolen from you.
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Fri May 26, 2017 6:18 pm

I haven't even collected that yet. In fact, I was told I needed to wait until June to get that claim.
ttf_jalapeno
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Post by ttf_jalapeno » Fri May 26, 2017 7:06 pm

I sold a piece recently for $66

I insured it for $100

Cost about $2.50 extra

Piece of mind is (always) worth it imo
ttf_Euphanasia
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Post by ttf_Euphanasia » Fri May 26, 2017 7:49 pm

I lost around $225 worth of parts when a Priority Mail package was lost. The $50 was cold comfort. I use "Shipsaver" insurance now. Way cheaper than USPS, and I've heard only good things about them.

I did write to the seller asking where they got the item. This is their response:

"We bid on lots at a government auction which is lost mail. That is how we get all items we sell. It is perfectly legal. All we know that this is lost mail."

Fact is, they know much more than that since they've been informed that it was a special piece. They aren't breaking any laws, but they could certainly cut you some slack.
ttf_jbeckett
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Post by ttf_jbeckett » Fri May 26, 2017 7:55 pm



I did write to the seller asking where they got the item. This is their response:

"We bid on lots at a government auction which is lost mail. That is how we get all items we sell. It is perfectly legal. All we know that this is lost mail."

Fact is, they know much more than that since they've been informed that it was a special piece. They aren't breaking any laws, but they could certainly cut you some slack.
[/quote]

Durn right they should cut him some slack. You're the fourth that I know of that has informed them of what is going on. Something that would even be better is if:
A) whoever won the piece gave it back to Zack
Or B) everyone retracted their bids

I'm still watching the item. We will see what happens.


ttf_Dan Hine
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Post by ttf_Dan Hine » Fri May 26, 2017 8:02 pm

Quote from: jbeckett on May 26, 2017, 07:55PM

A) whoever won the piece gave it back to Zack
Or B) everyone retracted their bids

I'm still watching the item. We will see what happens.



Well, we'll have to hope that whoever wins understands the situation and/or everyone who bid is a Trombone Forum member.

I'd like to offer up option C.

C:  Actually, I'll keep it to myself for now until after the auction is over.  PM me if you're just dying to know.

ttf_Matt K
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Post by ttf_Matt K » Sat May 27, 2017 3:49 am

Bear in mind too that the person only allegedly purchased at an auction. That does not exonerate this person as it could still be theft in some capacity. They should have some kind of receipt proving purchase if they did so at auction.
ttf_crazytrombonist505
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Post by ttf_crazytrombonist505 » Sat May 27, 2017 6:18 am

Quote from: Dan Hine on May 26, 2017, 08:02PMWell, we'll have to hope that whoever wins understands the situation and/or everyone who bid is a Trombone Forum member.

That would be great for Zac, but it is very very unlikely I'm afraid  Image
ttf_crazytrombonist505
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Post by ttf_crazytrombonist505 » Sat May 27, 2017 6:22 am

Just checked now and the mouthpiece is up to $177  Image

Hopefully it won't go ridiculously high...

Good luck getting it back Zac!
ttf_HouBassTrombone
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Post by ttf_HouBassTrombone » Sat May 27, 2017 6:33 am

I can't believe that it is going this high with days left Image
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