We’ve all seen the magic trick where they make a dollar bill disappear — but have you ever seen someone do tens of thousands of them?
A “magician” on the loose in the US is stealing thousands of dollars from superstores like Walmart across the U.S. — right in front of employees’ eyes, according to law enforcement.
Police in six states believe a single mastermind is behind the business hour heists… and they had no idea the multiple cases were connected until Monday, when the police department of Seguin in Texas made a funny Facebook post about it:
Waiting for your permission to load the Facebook Post.
“Penn & Teller – watch out. Seguin has their very own magician on the rise,” the cheeky post read.
“On January 10 and February 12, Seguin’s next David Blaine made a stop at Walmart for a quick magic show. Sadly, only he knew about the performance.”
According to investigators, the sneaky sorcerer had “quick changed” Walmart employees out of a staggering total of $2,700.
Quick changing, the post explained, is the sinister art of paying for cheap items using large bills, and using sleight of hand to quickly pocket some of the change handed to you by a cashier.
The suspect then counts out the remaining cash in front of the cashier and claims to have been short-changed… prompting the clueless victim to hand over the money yet again.
What this suspect was doing, Seguin PD told TooFab, was receiving wire transfers of large amounts of cash; he would distract the teller with chatter and quickly palm some of the money, before claiming he never received the correct amount.
The alleged sorcery was only detected when the tills came up short, and detectives poured over surveillance footage; only then did they see what the employee apparently had not.
“It all happened very quickly,” Seguin Public Information Officer Sarah Wallace told TooFab, adding that it was “very easy for the employees to get flustered when counting large amounts of cash.”
“Both a magician & a fashionista – this individual changed for his performance and is pictured during both incidents,” the post sneered, sharing two pictures of the Walmart wizard.
‘If you recognize this individual or have any further information regarding this incident, please contact Det. Schramm at 830-379-2123 so he can book him… for his next magic performance, of course.”
But it wasn’t the suspect who got recognized — it was his alleged magic trick.
The tongue-in-cheek post received over 100k views, and started to pick up national news interest.
That’s when Seguin PD started getting calls from detective colleagues in South Carolina, Tennessee, Rhode Island, Georgia and Virginia… and they realized the alleged scam was much, much bigger than they initially thought.
“This was definitely not his first time,” Officer Wallace said.
Investigators across all six states believe the same magician has been making money disappear from superstores all over the country; while Officer Wallace could not reveal how much they think he has stolen in total, it is likely to be in the tens of thousands — if not more.
She confirmed to TooFab they have a person of interest — and he is about to be forced to spill his (alleged) magician’s secrets.
“It all started with a smart Alec post, just trying to add a little humor to the situation,” she mused.