Authorities recover painting stolen from South Lake Tahoe art gallery
December 20, 2017
A stolen painting valued at more than $1,000 has been recovered thanks to some diligent work by gallery employees and law enforcement.
The painting, named “Three Bears Playing Golf,” was reported stolen from Pacific Crest Gallery in Heavenly Village on Dec. 9. According to a press release from the South Lake Tahoe Police Department, an unknown suspect stole the painting — valued at $1,195 — from the store’s sidewalk display.
Gallery staff eventually noticed the painting on a Craigslist ad in Sacramento. SLTPD detectives, posing as potential buyers, contacted the seller. The painting was serialized, which helped law enforcement confirm it was the stolen painting.
Detectives negotiated a price of $1,000 and arranged a meeting. With help from El Dorado County District Attorney investigators, detectives met the seller at his residence in Sacramento, according to the press release. After the exchange the suspect, whose identity is being withheld, was detained.
The suspect is cooperating with the investigation. Authorities are still trying to determine how he came into possession of the painting.
The painting, which is being returned to the gallery, was undamaged during the theft and recovery.