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Gift Cards

June 17, 2010 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles County supervisors Wednesday called for fundamental changes in the Probation Department after allegations that employees used department credit cards and gift cards to purchase flat-screen televisions, DVD players, video games and other items that have since gone missing. The department's new chief has asked the district attorney's office to look into the allegations against probation employees to determine whether they involve criminal wrongdoing. Donald H. Blevins, who took over the agency two months ago, promised Wednesday to "clean up" an operation that he said "lacks accountability, has substandard management practices, lacks internal control, and operational oversight."
January 21, 2013 | By Laura J. Nelson, Los Angeles Times
As cars snaked through a series of orange cones in a Compton parking lot, five shopping carts slowly filled with rifles and assault weapons. Nearby, plastic produce crates overflowed with handguns, spare gun parts and ammunition magazines. The weapons and accessories came from a gun buyback program held Monday by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, the agency's first such effort since 2009. Deputies sweated under unseasonably warm temperatures as they lifted weapons out of car trunks and truck beds and chalked the weapons' value on each windshield.
August 1, 2010 | By Andrea Chang, Los Angeles Times
When 14-year-old Bethany Mota gets back from the mall, she eagerly models her latest finds for friends and family. And for tens of thousands more on YouTube. The rising high school sophomore from Los Banos, Calif., is a "hauler," a term for tech-savvy young fashionistas who show off their purchases, or hauls, in homemade videos that they post online. Bethany started hauling about a year ago and now has more than 48,000 YouTube subscribers who tune in to watch her show off her favorite back-to-school outfits ("you don't want to wear heels and stuff, obviously")
February 5, 2014 | By Stuart Pfeifer
A Wisconsin man has agreed to pay $10,000 to settle Federal Trade Commission allegations that he sent millions of unwanted and misleading text messages to consumers with bogus offers of "free" gift cards and electronics. The FTC had accused Jason Q. Cruz of West Bend, Wisc., of sending texts that offered $1,000 gift cards to major retailers or free iPads to those who clicked on links in the messages. A typical message read, “You have been selected for a $1,000 Walmart GiftCard, Enter code 'FREE' ... to claim your prize: 161 left!
June 18, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Apple's annual back-to-school academic discount is back for the summer, giving students, parents and school faculty and staff members something back when they purchase a Mac or iPad. Those who qualify for the deal will get a $100 gift card when they buy Mac and a $50 card for buying an iPad. The gift cards can be used in the iOS App Store, iBookstore and iTunes store as well as the Mac App Store. Students in college or heading to college, parents buying for college students, and faculty and academic staff members at any grade level can partake in the offer.
January 31, 2014 | By Samantha Schaefer
A former security guard at a Lakers practice facility pleaded no contest Friday to stealing three of the team's championship rings and hundreds of dollars of gift cards, the L.A. County district attorney's office said. Mejía Eddie Monterroso, 23, entered his plea to grand theft of personal property and was sentenced to 180 days in county jail and three years' probation. He was also ordered to pay almost $14,000 in restitution. Prosecutors said Monterroso stole the property while he worked the night shift between Oct. 24 and Dec. 5, 2013.
December 29, 2004
The longest lines at the mall during last week's pre-Christmas shopping crunch didn't feature people hauling merchandise but rather waiting to exchange one form of currency -- American dollars -- for another -- those nifty store cards. Some malls even set up kiosks where you could get cards redeemable for everything from manicures to meals. Once considered the cop-out gift of a lazy shopper, gift cards moved ahead of clothing this year as the most popular present.
June 18, 2013 | By Jean Merl
A gun buyback event held over the weekend in East Los Angeles yielded 152 weapons, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said this week. The cache of weapons exchanged for gift cards to Target or Ralphs included several assault rifles as well as handguns, shotguns and standard riles, the department said. The event was held Saturday at Belvedere Park, one of several such sessions that encourage residents to turn in guns, no questions asked, in exchange for gift cards or in some cases cash.
April 23, 2013 | By Kate Mather
Los Angeles officials on Tuesday revealed details of the city's upcoming gun buyback day, the first held after similar events in December yielded record numbers for some area municipalities. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Police Chief Charlie Beck announced that residents can anonymously turn in firearms May 4 and receive up to $100 of Ralph's gift cards for handguns, shotguns and rifles, and up to $200 for assault weapons. Authorities will collect weapons at four locations from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. that day: The Los Angeles Fire Department Academy, 1700 Stadium Way; a South L.A. park-and-ride parking lot, 1300 West Pacific Coast Highway; the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, 7900 South Western Avenue; and the Van Nuys Masonic Temple, 14750 Sherman Way. Though the event is usually held in the spring, the December shooting at a Newtown, Conn., elementary school prompted officials across Southern California to host buyback days at the end of the year.
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