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Local gas station chain uses humor to combat theft

Posted at 3:17 PM, Jan 24, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-24 19:28:07-05

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. – Fav Trip is a locally owned gas station chain, with three locations across the metro. 

Like most gas stations, Babir Sultan said they don’t make much money off gas sales, and look at goods inside the stores to make money.  

“We’re in the penny profit margin," Sultan said. 

When someone steals from any of the three locations, Sultan said it hurts the bottom line.   

He first started to post pictures of the thieves around the store.  

“It was an OK response, but not good enough,” he said.  

So Sultan began posting videos of the crooks, along with his humorous commentary.  

“When we put it on Facebook, people started tagging the person that stole, or their family members would point them out to us, and then they’d come to us and say hey, would you mind taking my video down?” Sultan said.

The videos quickly went viral, and crooks even offered to pay for the videos to be taken down. One video had more than a million views in just a week.

There’s one video that sticks out to Laura, an employee.  

“We had an intoxicated gentleman come in. He decided he wanted some beef jerky for free, and proceeded to stick them down his pants and his socks,” she said.

Sultan said the videos have even helped police identify or pinpoint where a criminal may be.  

“The last person that stole cookies -- they had a few warrants against them, and [the police] don’t know where they are, now they know geographically where they may want to look," Sultan said.

If thieves aren’t caught in the act, they will be caught on camera. Sultan’s overall message for thieves is hanging in plain view, once you enter the store.  

He’s even made it into a t-shirt.  

“Thievery is not tolerated. If you steal from our store, we will blast you on Facebook and everybody will know.”

Watch one of Fav Trip's videos below.