Imponderable #67: Georgia

2 Nov

November 2, 2012

WOODSTOCK, Ga. — A family in Woodstock, who just lost their home of 20 years to foreclosure and are preparing to move out, lost even more on Wednesday, and it was all because they inadvertently triggered what they now call “mayhem” when they posted a Craigslist ad Tuesday night.

Their online post was just a well-meaning ad for a giveaway of furniture and other household items in their driveway outside the small house, a giveaway scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Wednesday.

But big crowds showed up early, while the family was out, breaking into the house and taking practically everything inside, in part because the way that the Craigslist ad was written gave them the idea that everything on the property was up for grabs. “Well, when we got to the house, I mean, pretty much — this,” he said as he stepped from the foyer into the living room. Their home — ransacked, ravaged, raked over. Almost everything inside — gone. “They came in and just tore the place up,” he said.

People who responded to the family’s Craigslist ad showed up at the house earlier than 10 a.m., before Vercher arrived there from work to supervise the giveaway. And when he drove up to the house, he said, they had already broken into it, helping themselves to almost everything inside. “Everyone was inside the house; they were taking out items,” he said. “There were cars around the block. It was like ants in and out of the house.”

Lamanac said she and Vercher’s mother arrived at the house about the same time Vercher did, thinking they were there in plenty of time to help distribute the items outside that they’d intended to give to the people who showed up. “When we got here, me and his mom jumped out of the car and said, ‘This is our stuff, don’t take anything,’ I mean, ‘If you have something, put it back,'” Lamanac said. “And this one woman actually, like, got in our faces and stuff, and started saying no, and everybody else just kind of drifted by us and didn’t listen and took the stuff and left.” “The front door was wide open and people were coming in and out with our things,” Hobbs said. “It was mayhem.”

They immediately called 911, while telling people to get out of the house and stop taking belongings from inside the house. “And a lady had her truck loaded with my grandma’s sewing machine,” Hobbs said. “And she wouldn’t give it to me. So I had to call police and they got my grandma’s sewing machine back.” That was one of the few items the family recovered, but the crowd had moved through the house quickly and most were gone quickly.

Here is the online ad that the family placed Tuesday night:

Fairly large, free yard sale. Moving and we want everything to go for free. So come over and take whatever you want and how much you want. Here are a couple of items that will be there: Couch, chairs, lots of household and kitchen items, appliances, a wardrobe, desk, recliner, movies, lots of books, lamps, women’s and teens’ clothing, etc. And also a box of free food with lots of cans. Please take only if you need it. We’re starting at 10 a.m., October 24th, and we’ll finish when everything’s gone.

Vercher said he now understands why people misunderstood the family’s ad to mean that they were giving away everything, inside and outside the house, because of the way they worded it.

Well hey, how could anyone possibly misinterpret that? After all, it only says “Moving and we want everything to go for free. So come over and take whatever you want and how much you want.” And right before that, the words “free yard sale.” OK, so technically most of the stuff was not in the yard, but seriously, what did these Southern schnooks expect? Craigslist is nothing but a place for thugs to plan their next invasion.

Yes, yes, I hear you yelling that “these are kind and generous people. Give them a break!”


Kind and generous people they may be, but they are dumb as the grit between their toes. I am all for helping friends and neighbors (and I speak as one who is helping in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy) but this is not how you do it! I am in no way at all absolving or making excuses for the lowlife looters who stole every toothpick from their home (and why would anyone want strangers personal pictures anyway?) but again, what did these folks expect?

Well, the bottom line is that nothing good comes from Craigslist. I could go on and on about the type of people who troll Craigslist for open houses, parties, etc, but I think the article sums it up best. Everything that could be taken from the house was taken from the house…”everything but a few of their books, which were left scattered across the carpet.”

Let’s just say they are not big readers.

Why would anyone post an ad on Craigslist for a free giveaway?
The question is Imponderable.


3 Responses to “Imponderable #67: Georgia”

  1. Jimbo November 2, 2012 at 4:05 am #

    The keyword everyone is missing here is “Georgia.”


    • zathra November 2, 2012 at 8:33 am #

      I wonder how far South Woodstock, GA is ? The further south, the more hick – y, probably. I say this as a native Southerner, BTW…..


  2. zathra November 2, 2012 at 5:54 am #

    I read the ad. It essentially said ” Come on by & steal us blind. Take what we have, we won’t mind “. I’ve heard some pretty bad things about Craigslist. I don’t go near the site. These folks were inviting disaster & probably naive as all Hell.


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