Here is the latest "City Watch" alert from Senior Deputy Tim Lohman of the Thousand Oaks Police Department. If you would like these updates directly from via email, click here for more information.
On October 23, 2012, a victim hired Flat Rate Movers, based out of Atlanta, Georgia, to move property from the victim’s former residence in Georgia to the victim’s new residence in Thousand Oaks, California. After the company took possession of the victim’s property, company personnel notified the victim of a delay in the transportation of her property and thousands of dollars in additional charges that had not been included in the original contract. Fearing she would not receive her property, the victim paid the additional money.
On November 4, 2012, a driver for Flat Rate Movers, (S) Jack Romanski, spoke with the victim by telephone. Romanski advised that several thousand more dollars were required or he would not deliver the victim’s property. Romanski told the victim that failure to pay the money would result in the victim never seeing the property again. He also warned the victim not to call the police. Investigation also led to the discovery that Flat Rate Movers LLC has a long history of customer complaints.
On November 4, 2012, Thousand Oaks Police Officers located Romanski and arrested him. The victim’s property was also recovered.
On November 6, 2012, Romanski was arraigned in Ventura County Superior Court on one felony count of extortion. He remains in custody at the Ventura County Pre-Trial Detention Facility on $10,000.00 bail.
The Thousand Oaks Police Department would like to warn its citizens to use caution when choosing a moving company. It is recommended that those preparing to hire a moving company go to www.protectyourmove.gov for helpful information.
Ventura County Crime Stoppers will pay up to $1,000 reward for information, which leads to the arrest and criminal complaint against the person(s) responsible for these types of crimes. The caller may remain anonymous. The call is not recorded. Call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477).