Small Town Newspaper Catches Paper Thief - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Small Town Newspaper Catches Paper Thief

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by Shannon Royster

TOMPKINSVILLE, Ky. The Kentucky New Era has been around since 1869.  The paper can be delivered to your home or buy it from one of 60 machines.

"It is an honor system, we trust people are going to take what you pay for," said Tony Henson, circulation director for KNE.

However, back in 2011, Henson started noticing a great deal of dishonesty.

"The cost of this to our company has been in excess to $30,000," Henson said. "There comes a point where you have to take action."

And that's exactly what they did.

"We sat in our vehicles and we just monitored the racks," he said.

Their inner company "sting" operation got Rosetta Jackson arrested back in March. She pleaded guilty Wednesday for stealing 73 Kentucky New Era newspapers in one day.

"In this case, we had someone who was paying for the opportunity to open the door, but not for everything that was being removed from the racks," Henson said.

They wondered why would one person possibly need so many newspapers?

"We had tracked it to the dates that the coupons were in the newspaper," Henson said. "That's when the higher theft volumes were happening. On coupon days we were losing anywhere from 50 to 55 percent of everything we were putting in our machines locally."

So, even though it costs less than a dollar, that money adds up

"Stealing is stealing whether its a nickel or 500 dollars," he said.

It's a loss they said they weren't willing to take.

"We will absolutely prosecute you over a 75 cent newspaper," Henson said.


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