Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Missing Art Works - Possible Theft?

Please note that this blog will be updated as more information becomes available.

Near the end of July this year I made an agreement via UShip online to have my art shipped from Santa Barbara to Vancouver, Canada with a company called LA Pack Pros. The agreement read that the art would be delivered within 7-14 days of its pick up. Its now mid September and I have had one phone call with their office manager, Andre, acknowledging that they did indeed have my art works but have received no information after that regarding where my work is now and when it will be delivered. Regardless of emails and phone calls I have sent, I have had no communication since that call near the end of August.

On August 5th this year my entire art collection of completed works and works in process on canvas and paper plus an original piece by Michelle Williams was picked up in Santa Barbara at my friend Steve Richardson's home by a man who called himself Robin 'Rob' Letcher. According to my friend Steve, he was about 30ish and was a white man about 6 foot, sandy blond hair with dreds. The truck was a white ford ranger about a 1995 with a white camper shell. He left a cell phone number which I have called repeatedliy and left voice messages, none have which been returned.

The information about this shipping company that I contacted via UShip.com and made the original agreement will appear the bottom of this blog entry.

If you have any suggestions, information, as to the wherabouts of my art work, or how I can get a hold of this so-called shipper, or if you are willing to help in any way please do contact me debchaney@live.com. Thank you.

I have begun to file a theft report with the City of Santa Barbara (805)897-2300 (I will post a file # here when it becomes available) and will pursue the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Internet Crime Complaint Center. I have also called the franchisee corporation - Go Packaging - who issues business such as LA Pack Pros their business entity and they are helping me with this.

Any ideas to help solve this mystery: debchaney@live.com. Thank you!

Company: LA Pack Pros

Name: Rob Letcher

Phone: (310) 673-0615

Alternate Phone: (562) 686-2145

Fax: 310-673-0291

Email Addresses: uship@lapackpros.com;





Franchisor: Packaging Store

Updated October 7-09

Since Posting this blog several weeks ago I have had the good fortune to finally be in touch with Rob Letcher (who apologized profusely) and said that, yes, indeed he did have my art work here. That he had tried to ship it to Canada twice and that it had now been returned twice at the border. WHy on earth he did not contact me about these attempts, I do not know. He since then put my art crate back on uship. com and the bid was accepted by another company and now I am waiting for full details - name, website, etc. Honestly, I was shaking and cried after he called. The funny thing was about the call was I was sitting at my desk at my computer looking at the paper work from the Santa Barbara Police department and reviewing a letter I sent to a layer in LA while in process of writing Rob an Email saying that enough was enough and I was going to be taking some serious legal action. He called just before I clicked 'send'. Interesting universe we live in. The saga continues though...

Interesting enough, I have received two emails regarding this blog post, of people in the exact same situations! Here they are:

Received today:

J. M. Kenworthy (jmkenworthy@gmail.com)
Sent:Wed 10/07/09 2:11 PM
Attachments: 1 attachment
CIMG0114.jpg (1527.5 KB)

I came across your blog because I am in a similar situation. I contracted with LA Pack Pros to take some furniture (including family heirlooms) from San Francisco to Lebanon, OH. A guy named Andre picked up the furniture in a rented box truck on August 22nd. I have attached a photo I took. You can almost make out the license plate. I have not heard from them since. I fear my furniture has been Stolen. I call the 562-686-2145 number about everyday and leave a message, but no one calls back. I did, however, get an address from uship.comfor LA Pack Pros (listed below). Unfortunately, It looks like an apartment building when I use Google Street View.

Have you ever heard back from them since you made your blog post? Its nice to know I am not alone, but I am also frustrated because I don't know what to do next. What email address did you use to get a response from LA Pack Pros?

Here is all the contact information that uship.com gave me.
Rob and Frank Letcher
(310) 673-0615
(562) 686-2145
(310) 673-0291
2909 Arizona Ave #9
Santa Monica, CA 90404
Thanks for listening,

J. M. Kenworthy

Jason (above Email) even sent me this photo of his shipment being picked up:

and here's an EMail I received last week:

Sean Kaylor (kaylorsean@hotmail.com)
Sent:Tue 10/06/09 12:49 PM

My wife and I had a number of items shipped from Texas to SF, CA. We also can't get a hold of LAPackPros and believe they have stolen our items. Unfortunately, most of the items were sentimental and of no material value.

If you get any word please email respond and I will do so in kind.

Sorry about all the troubles,

Sean Kaylor

By the way, I sent both of these inquiries to Kelly Dafleur who works for the Franchisor 'parent' company to LA Pack Pros. her contact information is as follows and she has been extrodinariliy helpful in this process of tracking down my shipment. Here's a big cheer for Kelly!!!

Kelly Dafler

Franchise Services Coordinator

Annex Brands, Inc.

7580 Metropolitan Drive, Suite 200

San Diego, California 92108-4417

Ph: 800-456-1525

Ph: 619-563-4800

Fax: 619-563-9850



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Alyson B. Stanfield said...

Deb: This is terrible! Please do keep me posted. I wonder what would happen if all of your peeps contacted the company?

Alyson B. Stanfield said...

Just tried to email 3 of the addies and two were returned to me undeliverable.

Alyson B. Stanfield said...

Deb: I just got an email from them and they said it's sitting in their warehouse. I forwarded it to you so that you can follow up with them and a new post

Chris said...

Just found your post when I googled Andre's number. We arranged for them to ship an apartment's worth of stuff from Santa Rosa to Washington, DC. They picked it up--same guys--but have yet to show up. We've been charged the full amount.

We heard from Andre a week ago that our stuff had just shipped. Since then, they seem to have fallen off the face of the earth.

We're about to file a police report ourselves. Inglewood PD told us to file it here in DC. Hopefully, this is just extremely bad customer service and a few calls from law enforcement will get all our stuff back.

Deb Chaney said...

Ok, so this Email was just received from LA Pack Pros to Alyson Stanfield via her inquiry on my behalf ( thank you alyson) my question is why don't they respond to my emails and phone calls and tell ME this??? Until I hear from LA Pack Pros and am certain that my art will be shipped as agreed upon this blog is staying up!


Not sure who you heard from that Deb Chaney's artwork was lost. Her artwork is sitting in our warehouse. It was returned becuase the shipping company we used couldnt clear customs. We normally use SAIA for deliveries to Vancouver. But due to the fact that we do not have our SAIA discounted account due to a dispute we have with them we had to seek out a different carrier. They picked up but when arrived at terminal SAIA couldnt deliver due to or dispute with them. We do make west coast runs from CA to Washington. We do not do international on our own. We use a National bonded LTL carrier.

Dont know what advice can be given to avoid what happened to her. You can do background checks of companies and this can still happen. But do note that nothing is LOST and we do not wanna see anything on your blogs saying that we lost/stole her artwork as that would be false and slanderous.

If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact. We work with many artist and galleries in the Los Angeles such as Michael Brunswick, Schomburg Gallery, LA Artxchange, Greg Chadwick. Please feel free to contact our clients to confirm our reputation for shipping art.


Operations Manager
LA PackPros

3738 w. Century Blvd. Unit 5
Inglewood, CA 90303
P: 310-673-0615
F: 310-673-0291
www. Lapackpros.com

A member of the Packaging Store franchises.


Anonymous said...

Glad to hear that your art has been found.

Paintings and people
Waiting, patiently waiting
To be found again


James (Yes, that James)

JohnMichael said...

So, do they REALLY have the art in their warehouse? Has that been verified? Or are they just saying that to ease the pressure?

If so, what can be done to get the art delivered?

And a good question is....why aren't they communicating with you instead of a third party? A reputable company would have contacted you immediately if there was a problem or delay.

Deb Chaney said...

James!!! Yes, that James!
I have been searching for you...How r u and sarah? Good I hope.
Email me please: debchaney@live.com
xoxox Debs

Deb Chaney said...

Ok, today Rob Letcher emailed me to say that have my art and that its been returned at the US/CDN border twice now. Why they could not have informed me up until now ( its been nearly two months) I have no idea. So we'll see how all this unravels..

Deb Chaney said...

Ok, latest update from the Franchisor is that this company is going out of business and declating bankrupcy. Oh lord. what next?

ItsLegal said...

I would keep making post after post after post until my art work was either returned or sent to where it was to be sent. You can tell you must of hurt his business because of your blog and that is what they need, pressure to bring this to a close. ALSO get the word out to as many people that you can about USHIP being a PLACE for crocks to make an easy fast buck. I am sure they did nothing to help you but took your money ASAP. There are thousands of storys like yours that no one knows about and USHIP will do anything to have your posts removed from different web sites. They do more DAMAGE CONTROL everyday because of the people that have been scammed out of MILLIONS OF DOLLARS if you added it all up, so PLEASE DONT STOP. Keep after them and keep posting how you were scammed and hopefully the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT will step in like they should of a long time ago. One last thing try to write to the #1 person within the FMCSA who is RAY LaHOOD and try to contact him and explain what has happened to you as well as everyone else. I sure hope you get your Art Work back I cant even understand what it feels like to be ripped off. Good Luck.

Deb Chaney said...

Thank you for your comment and concern. The work was recovered last year and shipped by another company. This company in question went out of business.