The Anchorage Police Department is reporting a tourist visiting the 49th state from the Midwest picked up a female companion in the state’s largest city and ended up paying, with a $40,000 Rolex, albeit unwittingly.
The Department did not reply to a request for information on the case, but on its Facebook page Wednesday it posted a photo of the stolen property and this story to go with the photo:
“If someone walks up to you in a bar, restaurant, wherever – and flashes a smile or bats their eyelashes at you – do NOT invite them back to your hotel room for a… romantic encounter. Because when you leave them unattended while you use the bathroom, that person will disappear with your $40,000 Rolex watch. And they’ll leave behind a business card with a phony name and number on it with a tagline that reads ‘Adventures of Fun.’
“Well yeah – for them. Not so much for you.
“Don’t believe us? We have a particular gentleman tourist from the mid-west (sic) whose adventure didn’t end in fun.”
Where APD got the $40,000 valuation is unclear. Still, even at a cost of $17,028, the loss of the watch would make for a costly date.
The Facebook post did not say whether APD has a suspect in the case. The post did offer a somewhat backhanded warning tourists to be careful in Alaska and suggested they not drive too slow.
“Use your inside voice, play well with others, and remember we’re all in this together,” the Post said after offering “a couple of suggestions for activities tourists should NOT participate in. For one, do not rent a motorhome and then drive under the speed limit on the Seward Highway. This makes us locals very cranky – especially if the fish are running.”
Although the current Facebook post suggests the theft happened this summer in Anchorage, it is not certain that is the case given that it went up as part of they agency’s “What Not To Do Wednesday” campaign.
When queried about a different WNTDW post this winter, APD Communications Director MJ Thim explained that APD doesn’t verify the information used for the Facebook posts.
“We are asking them (police officers) to help us out with the type of public safety tip for WNTDW, like please don’t drink and drive,” he wrote.
“We then ask for any antidotes or stories they have to help illustrate that point from their years in the field. As I am sure you can attest to, it doesn’t matter how many times we can generically say ‘please don’t drink and drive,’ sometimes it doesn’t get across. We are hoping with putting some real life to the message we can engage our audience.
“There is a reason these are only social media posts. We wouldn’t put something like this out over Nixle or in a press release.”