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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Jingling Thief Flees Laundromat With $350 in Quarters

Posted By on Wed, Mar 31, 2010 at 6:30 AM

click to enlarge How do you inconspicuously steal 1,400 of these?
  • How do you inconspicuously steal 1,400 of these?
In a story that all but begs for puns regarding money laundering, the Ingleside Police Station reports a Monday incident on the 600 block of Monterey. A laundromat owner called the cops, complaining seven of his washers had been jimmied open, and a thief had made off with $350 in quarters.

We made some calls in the neighborhood and determined the identity of the laundromat -- but its phone number no longer picks up and we're tired of spooking people with the same name as the owner by asking them about their burgled laundromat. So, no sterling quotes (other than, "But I don't own a laundromat"). On with Topic B: How easy is it to run out of a laundromat with $350 in quarters?

Well, to start with, $350 is 1,400 quarters. Laid end to end, they'd stretch 111 feet -- but that's not the most practical way of stealing coins.

How much do 1,400 quarters weigh? Well, one quarter weighs 0.2 ounces, so 1,400 clock in at 280 ounces -- which is 17.5 pounds. That'll last a long time at the videogame parlor, but you don't need a flatbed to haul it away. It should fit nicely in a large backpack. The Safeway right next to the laundromat in question doesn't have a Coinstar -- and staff there didn't remember anyone with a sack or pack full of money dropping in recently. But plenty of area stores do. You wouldn't even look out of place toting a massive bag of coins; everyone using a Coinstar does that.

Sad to say, but barring a near-miracle, it looks like this laundromat thief got away clean. 

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


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