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Inside Jobs ‘Rear Their Ugly Head’ in Connecticut

There’s been a string of alleged inside job crimes in Connecticut recently, and police often consider this angle when investigating a crime.

 

In Southbury, a McDonald’s manager is accused of helping accomplices rob the restaurant at gunpoint.

In Woodbury, a teen employed by a car dealership reported a robbery, but police say he helped arrange the crime with a co-conspirator.

Those two heists from this month were small potatoes compared to what a watch repair manager at the Victorinox warehouse in Monroe allegedly pulled off. The former employee is accused of stealing more than $1 million in watches over the course of the year and selling the jewelry out of state. The investigation was prompted by discrepancies in the company’s inventory.

The inside job has long been a staple of Hollywood heist films, and they’ve been especially common in Connecticut this month.

“The movies always sensationalize these things and we always look at [the crimes as] being real,” said Lt. Paul Vance, spokesperson for the Connecticut State Police.

Although several people are accused of inside jobs this month, Vance said there hasn’t been a sustained uptick.

“It’s a type of crime that sometimes rears its ugly head, and certainly during investigations any law enforcement will consider this possibility [of an inside job],” he said.

No one industry appears to be more susceptible to having an employee steal from within. “It can go all the way from white collar crime to some of the service-connected industries,” Vance said.

Sometimes the crimes seem relatively benign, such as a pair of Target employees in Orange accused of giving unauthorized discounts. Losses in the retail industry from employees can add up. The National Retail Federation estimates that losses due to the theft totaled $34.5 billion in 2012. The leading cause of those losses are employees, who stole 43.9 percent of the items.

Other inside jobs can be much more dangerous, especially when an armed robbery is involved.

"Something can always go wrong,” Vance said. “The participants are being placed in harm’s way, as are the bystanders.”

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