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Tack Theft! How to handle?

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  • Tack Theft! How to handle?

    Oh, if you could see the smoke coming outta my ears right now.

    Last night I arrived at the barn and discovered my horse's bridle was missing. A quick runthrough of the tackroom revealed the reins had been cut off at the bit and thrown in a corner. headstall and (brand fricking new) bit nowhere to be found.

    Immediately we came to the following suspicion: The reins were cut off. Guess it was somebody who doesn't know how to operate hook stud end reins. Somebody who doesn't know horses. Or place any value in a nice cavesson and martingale also on the hook and readily available. We have two non saddle seat riders in the boarding side... anybody who knows anything and was looking to sell for money or to have a good work tack set up woudl have just taken the whole darn thing. one is nobody who would do such a thing. The other is a newer boarder. Doesn't know beans. fancies herself a "barrel racer" and has always seemed a little shifty and weird.

    A mass text was sent out to the barn customers about the situation..... and then today me and a couple other riders did a thorough cleaning and organization of the boarder tackroom so there are a couple good sets of eyes who can attest to the fact that it was not present in the tackroom.

    Since the theft was discovered, the guy who feeds/cleans/kind of oversees the day to day stuff has been checking the tackroom after people leave. and surprise surprise, when "barrel racer girl" left, my headstall showed up with the brass painted the same bright pink that she painted the buckstitching on her saddle. The bit's not there.

    Barn employee immediately let me know it was back, sent a picture of it and will be contacting the barn owner/manager in the morning about the situation.

    My feeling is this: she needs to replace the tack that she stole/damaged/defaced. I would take the original bit back provided it's not painted pink too. If the pink paint doesn't 100% and I mean 100% come off without scratching up the brass, she needs to replace that, and she needs to replace the reins she cut off.
    I also feel like the barn needs to send her packing. I have a feeling this will happen.

    Are my expectations out of line? would you call the cops immediately about the situation or give the barn owner some time to try and get her to make things right? What would you do in this situation?

  • #2
    I don't know if the cops would even handle a situation for this low of a dollar amount, but yeah, I'd have the BO handle it. And if you know anyone who has a buffing wheel, that might remove the paint nicely if the bit turns up...I use it to polish all my bits back up and it gets quite a bit of junk off, makes them look brand new.
    America dialed 911. Donald Trump answered the phone.

    Stop pumping money into colleges and start getting ready to earn money in the projected tradesman shortage of 2024. Make Trades Great Again!

    Comment


    • #3
      Definitely be sure to evict that boarder, and yes, notify police because the behavior might escalate and you may need to get a restraining order too. What a nutcase!
      Jeanie
      RIP Sasha, best dog ever, pictured shortly before she died, Death either by euthanasia or natural causes is only the end of the animal inhabiting its body; I believe the spirit lives on.

      Comment


      • #4
        let me see... stealing and destroying...

        I am guessin that bridle cost more than the last pair of tennis shoes I bought...(I have to phrase it carefully, because I did spend 100 euros on shoes last year...2 pairs to be exact )

        Depending on where you are at, the thresh hold for big time theft is rather low, I seem to recall in some areas as low as 150 bucks or so....
        I would definitely file a report. You might need it probably anyhow, assuming that barrel racer chick will likely deny it and refuse to pay....

        what a twit...really, cutting of reins....
        Originally posted by BigMama1
        Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
        GNU Terry Prachett

        Comment


        • #5
          Is BO willing to tack cost of your equipment on that boarder's bill and give you the money? That might be the least messy way to handle it.

          Comment


          • #6
            What sort of genius...

            She definitely needs to go.

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Just did a bit of shopping to pull up comps and shipping quotes. the Reins and the little strap that extended the throatlatch to fit my horse is $91.__ including shipping. The headstall will cost $57.__ to replace and ship (just a basic midgrade side check work headstall), and the bit will be $41 to replace and ship. Looking at $190. have drafted a letter for the barn owner to give to the girl when she is dealing with her as far as a deadline for receiving the original equipment back in pristine condition and avoiding involving the cops. Here it is:

              (Barn Manager's Name) - please share the following with your boarder as you are dealing with her about this issue:

              I work hard to provide for my horse and keep decent equipment. Right now I am facing several hundred dollars worth of vet bills in the upcoming months with my horse's injury and it just adds insult to injury that you feel it's okay to help yourself to my tack and irreparably alter and damage it. It's not okay, I won't accept it. Shame on you. I "understand" stealing the bridle/bit (sort of... not really....) . But if you didn't want the reins, couldn't you have at least figured out how to unbuckle them and just leave them for me?

              Now, on to how you are going to fix this without the cops getting involved.

              For starters, the reins are absolutely not salvageable as you cut them at where they connect to the bit. Also, the Extender strap (1 of a set of action chain straps) used on throatlatch is missing:
              $91.50 for the reins and action chain straps including shipping through Fennells. This is the BARE minimum you will be replacing without the cops being involved.

              I will accept my bit back in its original undamaged, unpainted condition. Otherwise, :
              $41.50 including shipping for exact bit through SmartPak

              My headstall: I will only accept this back if EVERY SINGLE TINY SPECK of the paint is removed without scratching the hardware or any damage to the leather from use of solvents. I use my work bridle at horse shows and I'm not going going around in a headstall with ridiculous pink snaps and rings. Otherwise, replacement through sstack.com is $57.94 including shipping.

              You may handle this in the following ways:
              *You can give me the cash totaling the amounts above to cover replacement and shipping.
              *You can order these items from the and provide me with the confirmed invoices which I will call on to verify that payment has been received and they will be shipped
              *Or you can purchase/order suitable replacements through the Executive Outfitters tack shop at their retail price.

              I expect that this situation will be fully remedied as outlined above by Wednesday 2-27-13 at 8pm or I will be involving the cops on this issue, and pursuing the financial aspect in small claims including reimbursement for any filing/court fees.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by blairasb View Post
                Just did a bit of shopping to pull up comps and shipping quotes. the Reins and the little strap that extended the throatlatch to fit my horse is $91.__ including shipping. The headstall will cost $57.__ to replace and ship (just a basic midgrade side check work headstall), and the bit will be $41 to replace and ship. Looking at $190. have drafted a letter for the barn owner to give to the girl when she is dealing with her as far as a deadline for receiving the original equipment back in pristine condition and avoiding involving the cops. Here it is:

                (Barn Manager's Name) - please share the following with your boarder as you are dealing with her about this issue:

                I work hard to provide for my horse and keep decent equipment. Right now I am facing several hundred dollars worth of vet bills in the upcoming months with my horse's injury and it just adds insult to injury that you feel it's okay to help yourself to my tack and irreparably alter and damage it. It's not okay, I won't accept it. Shame on you. I "understand" stealing the bridle/bit (sort of... not really....) . But if you didn't want the reins, couldn't you have at least figured out how to unbuckle them and just leave them for me?

                Now, on to how you are going to fix this without the cops getting involved.

                For starters, the reins are absolutely not salvageable as you cut them at where they connect to the bit. Also, the Extender strap (1 of a set of action chain straps) used on throatlatch is missing:
                $91.50 for the reins and action chain straps including shipping through Fennells. This is the BARE minimum you will be replacing without the cops being involved.

                I will accept my bit back in its original undamaged, unpainted condition. Otherwise, :
                $41.50 including shipping for exact bit through SmartPak

                My headstall: I will only accept this back if EVERY SINGLE TINY SPECK of the paint is removed without scratching the hardware or any damage to the leather from use of solvents. I use my work bridle at horse shows and I'm not going going around in a headstall with ridiculous pink snaps and rings. Otherwise, replacement through sstack.com is $57.94 including shipping.

                You may handle this in the following ways:
                *You can give me the cash totaling the amounts above to cover replacement and shipping.
                *You can order these items from the and provide me with the confirmed invoices which I will call on to verify that payment has been received and they will be shipped
                *Or you can purchase/order suitable replacements through the Executive Outfitters tack shop at their retail price.

                I expect that this situation will be fully remedied as outlined above by Wednesday 2-27-13 at 8pm or I will be involving the cops on this issue, and pursuing the financial aspect in small claims including reimbursement for any filing/court fees.
                Sounds fair and reasonable, but don't get your hopes up for good results, because if this person were fair and/or reasonable, this would not have happened at all.
                America dialed 911. Donald Trump answered the phone.

                Stop pumping money into colleges and start getting ready to earn money in the projected tradesman shortage of 2024. Make Trades Great Again!

                Comment


                • #9
                  How old is "girl"? Threatening to go to police may get you cash, but I doubt you will end up with anything. I would report it either way, however. At least there would be some record.


                  If you don't get $, any possibility home owner's insurance would cover it?


                  Agree that she needs to be evicted ASAP. and flogged.

                  sorry you had to deal with such a schmuck. They aren't too bright, are they?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by blairasb View Post
                    I expect that this situation will be fully remedied as outlined above by Wednesday 2-27-13 at 8pm or I will be involving the cops on this issue, and pursuing the financial aspect in small claims including reimbursement for any filing/court fees.
                    Suggest you change the word "cops" to Police. If you later have to use this letter with them or in court, the proper terminology will go over much better with both the police and the courts.
                    At its finest, rider and horse are joined not by tack, but by trust. Each is totally reliant upon the other. Each is the selfless guardian of the other's very well-being.
                    (Author Unknown)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I'd strangle her, but I'm just in a bad mood right now.
                      Cutting the reins off - good quality reins are expensive, but fixing hook and studs is expensive too, grrrrr.

                      IMO the letter is both too nice and too complex. You need to get all your old stuff back, pink paint or not, plus the tack replaced brand new, ie she doesn't get to profit by keeping the old defaced tack and she has to replace what she stole without getting into cleaning it to perfection - you need tack that hasn't been abused and WILL NOT BREAK due to unseen abuse. God knows what she's done/will do to the stitching, razor cuts, etc etc.

                      I'd suggest she pay your BO cash to order the items and you and the BO handle ordering, that way there are no "errors" in replacement and she can get gone sooner.

                      If she can't come up with the cash then it's time for the police report, I don't know what the situation would be for that. Without your social or other ID marks even a pretty uncommon bridle type would be circumstantial if she swears up and down a "friend" gave it to her. In your barn this is a standard bridle, correct?

                      Thinking about it the police should be involved immediately and hopefully she won't do a midnight skip. If she gets a day to collect monies well you likely never see her again. She might abandon the horse and that pink painted tack too.

                      And of course she should be evicted, like yesterday. Really sorry about all this.
                      Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
                      Incredible Invisible

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        OK if the new boarder stole once, she probably stole before. And she'll keep doing it unless she is stopped. Replacing your tack is not the solution to the problem of stealing. You have to make a police report and also demand that she give you the money to replace your damaged tack.

                        Letting her off with only replacing your tack just will pass the problem on to others from whom she'll steal tack. And you should be worried that she might steal more of your tack or damage it since she is going to blame you, the victim, for complaining to others that she stole from you.

                        Thieves do not stop thieving. Making a police record allows others to know, if she steals from them, that it's not the first time that she has stolen. You don't know how long the woman has been stealing from others, but you can be sure this was not the first time. Nor will it be the last.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Are you sure she isn't on drugs? This is completely irrational behavior for a thief! Really, cutting the reins off and throwing them in the corner then painting the bridle pink? Was this out of the blue or do you two have some kind of history together?

                          I would file a police report and let them know what happened. If she is on drugs it could be a good wake up call for her. If you have a history of conflict though--who knows that might make it better or worse.

                          I sure wouldn't put up with her in my barn!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            "*You can order these items from the and provide me "

                            should "from the" be "from them" ?


                            is boarder a older teenager?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Be careful about accepting the bridle back. It might be considered that resitution is made and you would be stuck with a "pink" bridle. I think the girl is screaming for help. Why else would she return an item that she had obviously had in her possesion (considered stolen) unless she wanted to be confronted about it?

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Sorry this happened, person does sound pretty unstable, will be interesting to see how it works out, police report and complete replacement are in order.

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  I have zero history with this girl, barely spoke a half dozen sentences to her. She only came to the barn about a month and a half ago. Nobody in the barn really likes her because she's kind of awful to her horse (stops short of abusive but temperamental and harsh) and a major know it all and constantly parades her boyfriends around through the barn which doesn't set the best example for the plethora of young children who come for lessons every night

                                  My bridle is of a standard style, but it's distinctive in that it's black instead of the preferred havanna. and I can ID it by that it has an extra non standard hole poked in the very tip of the throatlach and if you scratch some paint off, there will be brass hardware despite the stainless steel holder that secures and separates the browband around the headstall and throatlach. It also has an extra hole punched right at the tip of the throatlach to make it long enough for my horses. I have pictures of the bridle on my horse that show these things pretty well. I also have knowledgable horse people who know that i owned such a bridle and the barn help was on top of checking the tackroom when people came and went and will be able to tell the police that it returned to the barn after a mass text was sent to the customers and this little hag magically acquired the matching bridle and brought it to the barn last night.

                                  Good point. A police report will be filed regardless. The last time this happened to me, I insisted on it. This will be no different. i guess I kind of wanted to give the barn owner a chance to handle this in a little more quiet/pleasant manner as her mom died last week...

                                  clanter- thanks for catching the typo for me. I was totally flustered while typing that.

                                  Re the "calling the cops" thing.... the guys aren't really bothered by it. My father's an ex deputy and I used to work closely with the civil divisions in 3 counties- they sometimes refer to themselves as such. But police does sound better.

                                  Just emailed the barn owner with this, same info simplified down a bit:

                                  Hi (Barn Owner) .... hoping that (Barn Help who discovered the return of my t ack) has touched bases with you and (BO's significant other) already this morning.

                                  I got a text from (kid who works at the barn) and (Barn Help) last night. They checked the tackroom yesterday as boaders were coming and going and after (Barrel skank) and one of her guys left and my headstall magically reappeared without my bit with all the hardware painted pink. We now know who did it because no way did she have the exact headstall as me (black, Tory brand, extra hole punched in the tip of the throatlach strap) and to magically obtain one the day after mine was discovered stolen.... .

                                  Could you please communicate to her that she owes me replacements for the tack she stole, defaced, and outright ruined ASAP. She can either give me cash to cover it directly, or buy/order suitable replacements through your store for the retail price and pay you. I don't care which.

                                  Here's what I priced out last night:

                                  That specific bit can be had for $41 including shipping through Smartpak
                                  The headstall can be had for $57 including shipping through Schneiders.
                                  Two sets of reins and the additional strap I used to lengthen the throatlach are $91 including shipping through fennells.

                                  I think that filing a police report so that there is a paper trail if this girl is a problem in the future for other people is the way to go, having dealt with this at (a previous barn where my show bridle was stolen along with the rest of the farm's show bridles from the trailer by an employee) and later finding out that the woman had done the same thing before but nobody had bothered to contact the police about it before. Please let me know what your thoughts are.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Good letter. I don't know if you should take your now pink bridle back as "evidence", time works against justice in some cases.

                                    Hope you are made whole and this is resolved to your satisfaction.
                                    Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
                                    Incredible Invisible

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Ugh, how crappy. I think you are handling this very well & hope the B.O supports you in getting your bridle in its original condition or money to replace it back. If B.O does not kick this boarder out I may be a little concerned.

                                      Since this has now happened to you twice, have you considered locking your tack up? We have tack lockers at the barn I ride at. The tack room is not locked, which scares me because the barn is not in the middle of nowhere & property is not monitored well enough outside of working hours. I keep my tack locker locked when I'm not using my stuff. The trainers opinion is that none of the barns tack is fancy enough so why would anyone want it? My opinion is that despite my stuff not being fancy I would be very upset if it was stolen. It really sucks not being able to trust people; but such is life. Might be something for you to think about.
                                      "Choose to chance the rapids, and dare to dance the tides" - Garth Brooks
                                      "With your permission, dear, I'll take my fences one at a time" - Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        Well, the bottom has been gotten to for the most part. The claim is this:

                                        Barrel girl denies knowledge of this activity. It was boyfriend #3 who "thought the bridle was hers and wanted to do something nice" (which I call BS on because why on earth would he cut the nice reins off his girlfriend's bridle... I think he knew it wasn't hers but was betting since my horse wasn't being worked, the disappearance would not be noticed for a long time, and then the horse would have had this nice customized bridle for a good long time... just got caught with his hand in the cookie jar). The bridle is unsalvageable. Not only is the hardware painted bright pink, but the horse's name is engraved and filled with pink paint on both cheek pieces.

                                        "Barrel Girl" has said that she will replace the headstall and reins ASAP.
                                        Because there is some degree of deniability (I don't buy it but... agreed, there is deniability. Not that there is a lack of responsibility as she brought him there in the first place, but the bf did come out sometimes without her...) the girl's not being kicked out. However, they are pricing out having locking saddle/tack units being built now and cracking down on the whole "having a parade of unknown people coming to the barn with their friends" thing....

                                        Comment

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