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Monday, November 26, 2007

Open House theives nabbed

Jessica Joyner, 39, and Jennifer Jones, 33, who both live in swanky upper East Side digs, were nabbed after being chased from an open house they were allegedly attempting to rip off.
jessica joynerid_news.gifTwo women were arrested on Saturday in connection with a string of thefts at five open houses over the past month according to a report in today's Daily News. The details are still a bit sketchy. The alleged thieves sound as if they are well to do, Upper East Siders. The News reported that "Joyner and Jones bolted from the apartment, but the broker raced after them, getting the license plate number of their getaway car...Using the plate number, cops tracked down one of the women, who gave up her partner". I'm sure that everyone is relieved to know that these two nuisances are off the street. A few updated links are listed below and I'll keep posting the story's bookmarks to the NewsReal sidebar. I attempted to deliver a prudent response to the news by posting about best practices to help keep our open houses productive and safe— a relevant response to the emerging story. Open Houses remain an important tool for sellers. These incidents, as surprising as they seem, are an isolated phenomenon. I've never heard of anything like them occurring before and I think most in the business would agree.

I want to take a moment to commend Doug Heddings at True Gotham for breaking the story, after being victimized by the perpetrators. He helped to mobilize awareness, and the story quickly spread throughout the real estate community. The momentum began at his blog, and resonated throughout the internet on Curbed, Urban Digs and of course, here on Comitini.com. That raising of the bar probably helped discourage any further thefts by the duo, and put some media pressure on the NYPD to quickly apprehend the suspects. I'm pleased to report that his client's had their jewelry safely returned. Way to go Doug and NYPD!

related stories:
Open Houses Are Safe Once Again (curbed.com)
The bold and "looty-ful" (New York Post)
Open House Theft Suspects Wanted in N.J. (New York Sun)