June 13, 2013

Bill requiring pawnbrokers to photograph items goes to LePage

The Associated Press

AUGUSTA – A bill to curb property theft by requiring pawnbrokers to photograph items they receive is awaiting Gov. Paul LePage’s signature.

The bill, which received final Senate passage Tuesday, requires pawnbrokers and others who deal in personal jewelry and precious metals to maintain digital photographic records of those items.

The bill was sponsored by Rep. Lori Fowle, D-Vassalboro, and was prompted by a Vassalboro couple’s experience with trying to get family jewelry back after it was stolen from their home.

Supporters say the bill is intended to make it harder for criminals to sell stolen goods and help theft victims, small business owners and police.

The bill would require that pawnbrokers hold on to items for 10 or 15 days before they can be resold or altered, such as by melting.

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