‘Flier Bandit’ Raises the Ire of California Agents

September 9, 2019

Real estate professionals in Santa Cruz, Calif., have dubbed a series of real estate brochure thefts around town as the work of the “Flier Bandit.” The man responsible, who has contacted local police and has not violated any laws, has been scooping up the brochures in bulk across town. He told police he’s collecting the fliers as part of a contest to “win a bride,” authorities say.

The man reportedly told police that for each flier he takes, he’ll receive a “point” to win a bride in a supposed contest for an arranged marriage. The local sheriff’s office says that because the fliers the man took were publicly accessible, he hasn’t broken any laws. “It’s bizarre behavior, and we’re trying to determine if there is some other crime that is being committed,” says Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Sergeant Dee Baldwin.

Real estate pros in the area are growing upset that their colorful brochures—which are meant for potential buyers—are being snatched up by the “Flier Bandit.” “He pulled up in front of a home, and I thought he was going to just take one. He proceeded to take all the fliers,” Pattie Erickson of Keller Williams Realty told KSBW-8 News. “I said, ‘You can’t take all my fliers.’ He proceeded to open his trunk and throw his fliers in the trunk, and then drove off.”

The man told police that he mails the fliers he collects to an address on the East Coast as part of the “bride contest.” He says the contest ends Oct. 1.