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April 3, 2012 at 7:08 PM

Costco supervisor accused of stealing from store’s till

A Costco supervisor has been charged with first-degree theft, accused of exploiting a loophole in the warehouse giant’s cashier system and stealing nearly $13,000 in cash from a store in Tukwila, according to King County prosecutors.

David Norman Hansen Jr., 36, was booked into the King County Jail on Monday and spent about an hour in custody before being granted a conditional release, jail records show. He does not appear to have any felony convictions.

In early February, Tukwila police responded to the Costco Wholesale store at 400 Costco Drive and learned that a store manager and a loss-prevention officer had launched an investigation into more than two dozen fraudulent transactions allegedly performed by Hansen, according to charging papers.

Hansen would allegedly credit customers with coupon rebates, then pocket the cash rebates without the customers’ knowledge, charging papers say. In some of the transactions, Hansen allegedly chose random product item numbers from store products with coupons, and then would choose random membership numbers to enter the rebates, the papers say. He was able to access the till using his supervisor pass code.

Apparently, Hansen was under financial stress at home and the frequency of his thefts from Costco was determined by the number of bills he had to pay, according to charging papers. In the weeks between mid-December and early February, he sometimes stole money every day, while other times, there were several weeks between thefts, the papers say.

A store manager reviewed surveillance footage captured over a three-day period and observed Hansen allegedly make a transaction without a customer at his register, charging papers say. The supervisor allegedly saw Hansen remove cash from the till, place it between two sheets of paper, and walk away, the papers say. The estimated loss to Costco is $12,867.64.

Comments | More in General news, The Blotter | Topics: Costco

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