Retail theft investigation at South Daytona shop

Eight people are behind bars after Volusia County deputies said they linked a little pawn shop in South Daytona to a massive theft ring, targeting Home Depot.

Investigators on Thursday raided the shop that is now closed indefinitely.  Richard Hill, the owner of Richard Hill’s Music and Pawn, has been jailed on racketeering charges.  He, along with his cohorts, are accused of stealing over one million dollar’s worth of merchandise and selling it online. 

For more than a year, Home Depot saw looters dash out of stores with high-priced merchandise. Instead of writing off the loss, Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood said the loss prevention team reported the thefts and provided the evidence that led investigators to the pawn shop. 

“[We] discovered that over a million dollars of these drills were being sold by this pawn shop online on eBay,” Chitwood said. 

Dubbed the Bay One Bandits, deputies arrested eight suspects. Some of them are related with prior criminal records. 

Sheriff Chitwood said pawn shop owner has no prior record. At one point in their investigation Hill was told that his merchandise was reported stolen, but investigators said he kept selling them, leading them to believe he was the ringleader. 

"They were sent out with specific orders,” Chitwood said. "They go right in, grab as many of these drills as they can and they would come right back. I'm sure he gave them pennies on the dollar and then he went and sold everything online."

Investigators said this is just the tip of the iceberg since they were only focusing on the Dewalt drills. They added that there were many other items stolen and right now they are going through all of the items in the pawn shop to figure out just what else was part of this scheme.