Last week, at the Tampa Bay Comic Con, Rick Whitelock had $85,000 worth of comics stolen from his booth. Those comics, are now back in the store’s possession, after an anonymous caller returned them as a “mistake”.

Whitelock, owner of New Force Comics in Panama City, reported the stolen box of comics to police on Saturday, when he discovered them missing at the show. The box of comics also contained two CGC graded copies of Amazing Fantasy #15 (the first appearance of Spider-Man). Those comics, graded at 5.0 and 4.0 were priced at $19,995 and $15,995. Many sites reported on the theft, which may have prompted the anonymous phonecall to Whitelock.

He said the man told him he wasn’t sure how he’d ended up with the box containing such rarities as Amazing Fantasy No. 15, Uncanny X-Men No. 1 and Incredible Hulk No. 1, but realized the mistake while later unloading his own boxes after the convention. Whitelock told police the man said it was possible he or a helper had picked up the wrong box.

The story makes it sound like another vendor picked up the box, but interestingly, one of the cases for Amazing Fantasy were cracked, which sounds like someone was trying to crack the case for resale, before realizing everyone on the planet was on the lookout for the collection.

Whitelock had tried to get Mr. Anonymous to drop the comics off at a couple of different locations, but those solutions were refused. Obviously, this person knew more about the legal aspects of being in possession of stolen goods than the average person on the street. The anonymous caller returned the comics on Wednesday via FedEx, which had to be a huge shipping fee.

via Tampa Bay Times


About Author

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment. You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...


  1. It does sound fishy when the person doesn’t and won’t identify himself.
    On the bright side, this anonymous person didn’t have to return the comics. He could have dumped them.

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