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Monday, January 21, 2019

The Quick-Change Artist

A larcenist who steals cash by short-changing a bank teller or retail employee is commonly referred to as a quick-change artist. The offender, often dressed in conservative business attire, encounters his victims during hectic periods when the employees are handling many customers. Appearing somewhat confused and in a hurry, the quick-change thief purchases an inexpensive item with a $20 bill, getting in return one $10 bill, and four $1 bills along with some change. The quick-change practitioner suddenly discovers that he has another $1 bill on his person. He puts it with the other four singles and asks for the cashier to give him a $5 bill in return. Upon receiving the five, he puts it with the $5 bill he received before and asks for a ten. When the $10 bill is given to him, he does on give up the two $5 bills he owes in return, but instead places the two fives with the ten he has just received and asks for a $20 bill. Since the victim did not get back the two $5 bills in return for the $10 bill relinquished to the thief, the cashier has been short-changed ten dollars. This is a crime that often goes undetected and is rarely reported.

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