Amazon employee says he stole as retaliation for lack of hours, benefits

SEATTLE — Court documents uncovered by KIRO 7 reveal Seattle police are investigating an Amazon employee for stealing electronics while fulfilling orders.

In late August, officers were called out to the Amazon Fresh location on South Lander Street by a loss prevention officer who says the employee was caught on camera three times taking small electronics, including phones and external hard drives.

That officer says surveillance video showed the employee scanning items for customer orders, then taking additional items off the shelf without scanning them.

According to the documents, the employee admitted that he’d been stealing for more than eight months by hiding the items on his person or in his bag when he left the building.

He estimated he walked away with about $12,800 worth of electronics, which he sold on eBay to help deal with his financial difficulties and as a way to supplement his substance abuse.

The documents go on:

"(Employee) said he initially started stealing and reselling the items because of his financial hardships. He went on to say things changed when he learned Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon, was the richest person in the world, while he was not allowed to work more hours a week because he may get more benefits, or because there weren't enough shifts for employees and this 'definitely added fuel to the fire.'"

The employee was fired and booked into jail on suspicion of theft and trafficking stolen property. He made an initial court appearance where a judge did not find probable cause to hold him.

Seattle police are still investigating the case.

KIRO 7 is not naming the employee since he has not been charged. Amazon did not respond to a request for comment.

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