British police are currently searching for a man who they are calling “the BOTOX thief.” They do not know his name or address, and all they have to help them find this man is an old picture of him taken before his procedure. They have called on the residents of London to help them find this proverbial “needle in a haystack.” Good luck.
You might be wondering how a man was able to steal BOTOX treatments. It seems fairly absurd that a person can just walk out on a medical treatment without paying. I’ve read about many instances of people committing identity theft to pay for plastic surgery. Even that boggles my mind, but I do realize that there are many savvy individuals out there who can flawlessly pull off such a scam. But to just walk out without paying? That seems like an amateur move to me. I can’t believe it actually worked.
Our thief went to a beauty salon near London and received BOTOX treatments totaling more than $1,400. When it came time to pay, the man fumbled around in his pocket for awhile before telling the salon that he must have left his credit card either in his car or at a nearby gas station. He promised them he would be back with his card in a few minutes and then just walked out. They never saw him again. Shocker.
Police have released a pre-BOTOX picture of the man and are imploring people to come forward with any information they may have on his whereabouts. I guess that since BOTOX yields less dramatic results than a facelift, the “before” photo may still be somewhat accurate, although he will probably look a bit younger now. However, it is generally not the best idea to search for a suspect who has undergone facial plastic surgery with a “before” photo. Not exactly what I’d call stellar police work.
I don’t want to harp on the poor job of the London police. In their defense, they were not given very much information to go on, and as they have indicated, this is a most unusual crime. What I would like to comment on is the complete ineptitude of the beauty salon.
This is the 21st century. We have computers, and I can’t remember the last time I saw a business of any kind that didn’t use them. Generally, when you call to make an appointment for a service such as a BOTOX treatment, the place providing the service will ask you for your name and phone number at minimum. This information will get logged into their computer.
When a service is medical in nature, even more information should be required of a patient, even if the procedure is being performed at a beauty salon. There are liability issues at stake in a procedure like this. You don’t just stick a needle in some guy’s face without covering all bases first. It just doesn’t work like that — at least not in the United States.
I’m shocked that the salon didn’t require the man to fill out a form asking for his name, address, phone number, email address, insurance information, and possibly other medical-related items such as any known allergies. This seems like it would be standard operating procedure for any establishment before providing such a service. Failure to provide this information should result in denial of treatment. End of story. Any business not asking for this information is highly unprofessional, and I wouldn’t trust them to properly administer my treatment.
Then there is the atrocious manner in which the salon botched the handling of payment. I would imagine that before administering a treatment costing over $1,400, they would discuss payment up-front. Most people don’t just charge that on a credit card, although I suppose it is possible to do so.
Generally, the form I referenced earlier would probably discuss payment options, asking you to either provide credit card information or sign up for a particular credit service that the business regularly works with. The fact that they carried out such an expensive procedure without any clue how this guy would pay for his treatment seems grossly irresponsible to me, and it ultimately led to the situation that got them stuck footing the bill for this treatment.
Common sense dictates that if you are going to let someone just walk out of your shop on a promise to return with payment, you will ask for some sort of collateral, or at the very least a name, billing address, and phone number. Generally, holding onto the guy’s driver’s license would seem to be standard protocol for such a situation. But accepting, “I promise I’ll come back and pay” with no other assurances or means of contacting the guy is just plain silly.
Ultimately, I think the police should refuse to track this guy down. This crime should be placed in the “you got ripped off because you’re an idiot” category. In my opinion, this salon got what it deserves. I hope they learned their lesson. Next time someone tells you he’ll be back to pay as soon as he finds his credit card, HOLD ON TO HIS DRIVER’S LICENSE!