Boss tracks down accused cell phone thief using employee's security app

Lorna West and her boss, Chad McVeigh, worked to recover her stolen cellphone with the help of a security app. (WSYX/WTTE)

Lorna West knows how lucky she is to have her stolen smart phone back in her hands, within a day after it was taken.

"If you use the phone the way I use my phone," said Lorna, "I use it pretty much for everything."

West says she last saw her phone Monday night when she placed in top of an ATM inside a Speedway Convenience store in North Columbus. Hours after the Samsung Galaxy S7 was stolen, West says the she started receiving email photos from the security app "Lookout', which she recently installed on her phone.

"You can tell, he doesn't know his picture is being taken, while he has my phone in his hand," said West.

That's when West's boss, Chad McVeigh went into action. Lorna and Chad work at a transportation company for Williams-Sonoma, located in Grove City.

During his lunch hour, McVeigh says he posted the photos on social media and was able to determine where the guy worked. He then went over to the business and was able to positively identify the man and then called him on his home phone.

"I said before you say anything, I want you to know, I know you got the phone because you are on surveillance footage, I know you are in the shot, because there is an app that took your picture, while you were trying to unlock it," said McVeigh.

Chad didn't stop there, he then contacted police and posted video of officers getting back the phone from the suspect's home.

"Back within her hands within an hour-and-a-half," said McVeigh, "all in a day's work."

Lorna bought the security app shortly after her phone was stolen in July. An investment she did not expect would pay off so quickly,

"Without the app, and without my boss I got, it would never have turned out to be a good day," said West.

Columbus Police said detectives are now investigating and say charges could come shortly.

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