For the record, the rifle is back in the safe. It has been for three days.
It was there just to be a security blanket, so to speak. The gun stuff is over, now.
So, how did this guy from an antique store end up with a Rolleiflex for only $20?
The guy is a "picker." He goes around to garage sales and flea markets and buys stuff he thinks he can sell. He doesn't know much about cameras. Just that he thinks he can make a buck. Buy low and sell high. He didn't know what he had except that it was an "old camera."
I took the tip that clayne gave in an above post and followed up on it.
I asked him if he ever got any camera stuff. He said, he only buys "Old, German cameras." (Ding! Ding!)
I pulled a copy of the picture of my camera out of my pocket and showed it to him. The guy just about shit himself.
He called this other "picker" guy who came right over. I showed him the picture and he turned white as a ghost.
I asked him if he was "814treasures55" I thought he was going to piss his pants.
I told the guy that, if I got the camera back, I would just tell the cops I found it. He promised to bring the camera the next day.
He told me that this scroungy looking guy came in the store and tried to sell both cameras. He didn't want the Pentax because he only wanted "old" cameras." I got a description of the scumball and the woman he was with.
The picker guy gave the Rolleiflex back to me, today. It's here with me right now.
He might be an idiot and a little bit slimy but I don't think he's an outright crook.
I had a Yashica-D that I got from a neighbor in exchange for some work I did for him. I have better cameras than that, so I don't use it. It's been on my shelf for a couple of years. I traded him the Yashica for the Rollei.
So, your question is, "Why did I give the guy ANYTHING?" I don't owe him anything.
Okay, maybe I felt a little sorry for the guy... Only a LITTLE. I did it mostly just to keep a leg up on him.
I could have had him busted. I could have had that junk store shut down. But, now, I've got him in my pocket.
I still have one camera missing. I can call in that favor if I need to.
I was outside, last night, and I talked to a neighbor about the problem. He told me that he saw some scroungy looking guy walking around the neighborhood and he knows where he lives. I gave him the description and he confirmed. I even know the guy's name and address.
As to the garage, it's an detached, outdoor, wood frame garage. If you rattle the door hard enough it can be pushed open.
Since it's a wood frame, I could buy a $1,000 lock but, if you can push, sideways, against the door frame the bolt won't engage the latch. In order to prevent that door from being forced open, I'd have to put in a reinforced door frame. Do do that, I'd probably end up rebuilding the whole garage.
That's why I made that "fortress" comment.
I'm still looking for the Pentax camera and the other stuff.
I still haven't spoken directly to the detective in charge of this case but it's a holiday weekend. The trail is probably getting cold.
It would be great to get everything back but, for now, I'm just happy to have the Rollei.
What I don't get back, I'll talk to my insurance company about.
What I don't get back from insurance, I'll apply for Crime Victim's Assistance and Restitution.
Will keep updating when there is more news.