Caught on camera: Real estate broker accused of stealing prescription drugs from home
RENTON, Wash. - A real estate broker who claimed he was going to show a Renton home to a potential buyer was arrested for stealing prescription painkillers from the homeowner and it was all caught on camera.
"I'm watching it live and I'm like, 'Holy cow, this guy is ripping me off,'" said Doug Wright, who put his home on the market last weekend.
Aaron Peterson, who was employed as a real estate broker for Windermere during the incident, was later arrested for burglary.
Wright said he didn't think anything of the message when Peterson requested to show his home. However, Wright said when Peterson showed up, no one else was there to meet him.
Wright knew the man was alone because security cameras are set up throughout Wright's home and he was watching it all from his phone while at work.
Detectives with the King County Sheriff's Office said Peterson was seen on camera inside a bedroom rummaging through the drawer of a nightstand.
"Part of it was just amazement. I was talking to my phone. I was like, 'Dude, there's a camera right in your face,'" recalled Wright.
Detectives said Peterson opened a bottle of prescription painkillers and took some of the pills. By the time Wright called 911 the suspect was gone.
The next morning Wright said he got another text from Peterson while a deputy was at the home getting a statement from him.
"So, I sent a text back and said that will be fine I'll let my son know he needs to get out of the house," sad Wright.
When Peterson returned to the home detectives said, once again, there was no one there to meet him. Peterson went inside the house and as he was leaving detectives showed up and arrested him.
"I actually prayed for the guy. I actually prayed for him and his wife because their lives are screwed up," said Wright. "I don’t confuse compassion with enabling a person needs to be punished for what they do."
Peterson, a real estate broker with nearly 20 years experience, was employed by Windermere.
In a statement, Windermere spokeswoman Shelley Rossi said, "Windermere has a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to matters such as this, so upon learning of this incident, Aaron was immediately terminated."
Rossi also said the company informed the multiple listing service to revoke Peterson's key card access privileges and also the Washington Department of Licensing.
The state requested Peterson's bail be set $10,000, but the judge issued a summons and Peterson was released from custody. He had no comment on Thursday night when KOMO News stopped by his home.
Peterson is scheduled for arraignment on November 23rd.