Catch 'em all?
On May 13, Knight entered the store while still in uniform and attempted to check out around a dozen boxes of Pokemon cards worth about $398. However, he had tampered with the packaging on those boxes, sticking barcodes of less expensive items to try and get them at a cheaper price.
As the police officer tried scanning the spurious labels, an “Asset Protection Investigator” became suspicious and halted the transaction.
When the store worker confronted him, Knight started to hedge around and then took off, saying he had to take a call. However, he was identified immediately, then was arrested. Three days later, he left his role at the county sheriff’s office.
At his disciplinary hearing in August, he was charged with one count of unlawful acts involving “theft detection shielding device.”
Knight signs diversion agreement, discharged from the police force
Knight escaped the criminal charge, but his case made it to the Kansas Commission on Peace Officers’ Standards and Training, the government body that oversees police employment in the state. Ultimately, they determined that Knight did not possess the “good moral character” required to retain his license.
Thus, Knight entered into a diversion agreement with the local District Attorney’s office, and he will no longer be able to serve the public as a police officer—which he did at the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office from March 2019 until his firing.
His attorney released a statement to the Kansas City Star, saying that the accused “exercised poor judgment,” and was now gainfully employed after his discharge from the police force.
There has been a surge in Pokemon card-related crimes over the last few years. Recently, a Dallas man was arrested in Albany for stealing $1000 worth of Pokemon cards. He worked with an accomplice and allegedly used threats and physical intimidation to carry out the robbery. He has since been charged with multiple accounts of theft and criminal conspiracy.
Furthermore, as Pokemon cards are wildly popular, there are collectors willing to pay exorbitant amounts for the rarer ones. Duplicates and a thriving second-hand market make them easy targets for fraudsters.