Spam is not only Hawaii’s favorite luncheon meat.
It’s also a hot commodity for thieves.
Kurt Fevella says he’s lived in Ewa Beach all his life. On Wednesday night at Longs Drugs, he saw something that genuinely surprised him.
He says while he was getting ready to leave the store, he noticed a woman with a cart full of 18 cases of Spam.
“It totally caught me off guard. I’ve never seen anything like this in my life. I’ve been here a long time. I’ve seen people steal one or two items. Maybe they’re hungry, but not a whole wagon of Spam,” he said.
Fevella says he had a feeling something wasn’t right.
“As soon as they had passed the checkout stand, I was by the entrance to the door to make like I was walking back out there. In the corner of my eye, I saw them, and all I did was pivot and I turned around and the workers were on the side. She had her spotter on the side of me, and the other one was with her and she just pushed the wagon,” he said.
Fevella says three women were trying to take the Spam. When he confronted the woman pushing the cart, she pushed it toward him and left without the canned goods.
“I didn’t say anything. She knew that I wasn’t going to let her rip off the store. I wasn’t going to have it so she just gave it up and she turned around,” he said.
Fevella says the three women were able to make it out of the store with other bags that weren’t paid for.
Tina Yamaki of the Retail Merchants of Hawaii says Spam and other canned goods have become hot commodities for thieves.
“We think it’s retail organized crime. They have a system. They know when to hit the stores, where it’s stacked, and they go in, load up the carts, run out the back doors, or through the front door sometimes,” she said. “You’re finding them at swap meets sometimes, in back of cars. You see them in small mom and pop stores, and probably sometimes these people don’t realize that they’re selling stolen items.”