Ada County Sheriff Gary Raney displayed a table full of high-ticket items Wednesday - watches, a digital video camera, laptop, iPad, wireless headphones and Nikes (size 9-1/2). But the items won't remain at Ada County Sheriff's headquarters for long. They're heading, along with almost all other unclaimed stolen items, to propertyroom.com, an online auction site that will begin offering hundreds of goods to the highest bidders online.
Traditionally, Ada County has auctioned off its unclaimed stolen items at events attended by approximately 125 possible bidders, but propertyroom.com boasts an online audience of 1.25 million potential customers.
Raney estimated a possible personnel savings of $4,000 a year, in addition to not needing to use extensive warehouse space to house unclaimed stolen items.
There is no administrative fee from propertyroom.com. Instead, the online auction service gets a piece of the action. Raney said the online auction house will receive a percentage of the winning bid, but never more than 50 percent. The percentage is a tier-based scale, depending on the item and its estimated high bid.
Raney said no "weapons of violence" would be sent to the auction house. Firearms are re-sold to registered dealers on an annual basis, and all other weapons are destroyed, if forensics is not in need of the weapons to use as evidence.