Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Public Storage Sells Out a Soldier

Army Reserve Specialist Patrick Rogalin served a year in Iraq in the town of Al-Kuk (which is close to the Iraq/Iran border). Before he shipped out he put all his worldly possessions into Public Storage and set up an automatic bill pay -like many soldiers do. While Rogalin was deployed someone wrote $900 worth of fraudulent checks on his account and to Bank of America's credit they noticed the action, put an immediate hold on the account and set up another one.

When Rogalin returned home from Iraq and contacted Public Storage to inquire about the status of his account (that he resumed paying as soon as all this was worked out) he was told that all his possessions had been sold back in June.

Wouldn't you think that once the huge company learned they had sold the only possessions of a reserve soldier after he had already been a victim they would have scrambled to make things right? You'd be wrong...

"...Rogalin said he never received any warning from Public Storage that his account was in trouble. Nor did he get any notice everything he owned was going to be sold.

He's now fighting the company, based in Glendale, Calif., to get appropriate compensation for his clothes, books, electronic gear, furniture, historic magazines and other property it disposed of without his knowledge.

Ron Ramler, regional vice president of Public Storage, said his company policy prevented him from talking about Rogalin's case. "I can say that I am in communication with Patrick again to resolve it," Ramler said Friday.

Rogalin still has his car and the military clothing he brought back from Iraq. And his girlfriend, Jaimie Alonzo, 21, and her parents bought him some clothes for Christmas. "At least now I'm not wearing the same three things every week," Rogalin said.

Rogalin estimated his belongings were worth $8,000. But he said Ramler offered him only $2,000 — and an apology — for his loss. "I called them back and told them this isn't anywhere near right," Rogalin said. "They upped their offer to $2,500 and gave me seven days to accept it or get nothing." (source)

I might have to send an email to one of Public Storage's executive officers letting them know how crappy this is...

UPDATE: Public Storage Responds


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