If you are the two (or more) fellas who took stuff from me, I wish you the best and I hope you reconsider your actions and get on a better path to making money. I figured you might look my website up since you did steal my music education brochures and many of the albums released by me. Also, if you still have my iPod and portable hard drive – please return it. It takes a long time to build up a collection of music and you took the device that had the collection (iPod) and the device that had my backed up files (WD Hard Drive). I will even pay you for the return of those items.
Like I said, I wish you well in your future endeavors which don’t include violating other people.
So on the morning of Wednesday August 14th, I walked up to my van to go to work. The driver’s side door was open a little bit. “Dang it! Is my battery going to be dead?” I continued to enter the car and saw that the iPod cord was not plugged into the stereo unit like normal. Yup, the iPod was gone. I hadn’t learned my lesson to lock my car and remove valuables after two iPods had been stolen from me in previous years. BUT THIS WAS MY OWN APARTMENT. Can’t trust any location where it is an open parking lot I guess.
I noticed after I shut the door that the light was still on. The passenger sliding doors were open and BAM! I realized that all of the percussion equipment in the car was missing! These were most of the mallets and percussion gear that I developed with and they are VERY important to me. (Well Mike, why would you leave that in the car then?) Lesson: never leave any valuables in the car, within view.
So I went through with a police report and the insurance claim (because this was almost $2000 worth of percussion gear and electronics!) Then while calculating the list of missing things I realized that the portable hard drive that included my entire music collection was on the passenger seat. Boom; my entire music collection of over 18,000 songs… was gone. The music collection that I tirelessly fed disc after disc into iTunes for years to be playable on an iPod. Gone. It felt like part of my soul had been taken away. As my friend Jaems said, “just make new music now…” (Well Mike, why would you ever keep those two items in the same place?) Lesson: Back up everything I have onto a large hard drive and start using the cloud!
This is when I went through with a fraud alert and changed my credit cards just to be safe. I learned quite a bit about credit bureaus and identity theft!
By this time I had called many music stores and media exchange type of places to make sure they knew to keep a lookout for my possessions. There was a very nice man named Burt who helped me out by contacting other store owners he knew for me. If anyone reading this falls into this situation, ask the store owners if there is anyone who could help out that way! (BTW: Everybody should shop at the Music -Go-Round in Greenfield.) The day after the theft, I was called by a police officer who asked me to describe my mallets. It was the toy purple shafted and orange headed mallet in the picture below that made him say, “yeah, this is yours.” :) When I got there, there were to fellas who were being interrogated, searched, and handcuffed. I felt very emotional at that point and decided it was probably safest for me to blend into the store. End of this part of the story, they got a citation for possession of stolen property and I got my music equipment back. Lesson: immediately after theft, check in with pawn shops and such and do a police report in order to get information out there.
Unfortunately, they said that they were selling it for a third party and I guess that means they were not able to search cars/houses… (or they already got rid of the electronics) I guess they had an iPod cord, but that is not enough. It seemed like a shame that their rights were protected by law at this point. Nevertheless, I did not receive my music collection or iPod back. Hey guys who got busted! Be sure to listen to the recent recordings that Mike Neumeyer and Jaems Murphy have put together! They will be in the playlist titled: Guitarimba. (hehe, get it? Guitar and Marimba… a marimba is what you would play with those mallets you stole! Learning is fun!)
Well, this has been a very educational roller coaster of an adventure for me. I really wish folks weren’t pushed to do this type of stuff and that I could actually trust having some equipment in my car where in my own apartment complex, but that is not the world we live in. The world has never really been like that. I am so lucky to have learned a lesson while still getting my treasures back. Gentlemen, if you are reading this – please consider making a wrong into a right by returning the electronic items. You obviously know where I live. All the Best.