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Rep. Hale pushes anti-theft legislation through Indiana House

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For immediate release:
Feb. 21, 2013


INDIANAPOLIS - The Indiana House of Representatives today passed legislation coauthored by Rep. Christina Hale (D-Indianapolis) that helps prevent theft of family heirlooms and other precious metals.

House Bill (HB) 1188 would require precious metal dealers to hold items for ten days before recasting or selling them. Additionally, the bill requires dealers to log identification information of the seller and a photograph of the items.

According to Hale, this legislation is a tool to help prevent theft.

“Many Indiana communities have a serious issue with home invasion, because it is much too easy for criminals to steal family heirlooms and other valuable precious metals and sell them for quick profit,” she said. “Currently, sellers do not need to show identification or have to wait to receive the money. It’s convenient, anonymous and easy. By establishing the ten day holding period, the police have time to find the stolen items and prosecute the offenders.”

Prior to the start of this legislative session, Hale investigated cash-for-gold stores in her Indianapolis district to learn about the process. In speaking with store clerks, she learned metals are melted down almost immediately upon sale. This concerned Hale, who worried about the families who have dealt with home break-ins and theft in communities with these businesses.

“There are legitimate businesses in Indiana that buy and sell gold, but there is a serious need for regulation,” she said. “House Bill 1188 protects families from permanently losing their irreplaceable heirlooms.”

HB 1188 passed through the House with a 96-1 vote, and now advances to the Senate for additional consideration.

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