A woman lost her watch on a ride at EPCOT last month. That innocent mistake cost more than $40,000. Here’s what happened, according to the report from the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.
The woman was fidgeting with her Apple watch while she rode the slow-moving The Seas with Nemo & Friends attraction on April 13. The ride was in an elevated position, the woman said, at the worst possible time when the watch popped off her wrist.
The Apple Hermès watch — which is worth $1,300 — fell through the grated floor on the ride. It tumbled down and landed on a pathway below. The woman could see her watch, but it was just out of reach while she was stuck on the ride.
Her husband jumped off the moving ride to try and retrieve it — a big no-no at Walt Disney World.
Operators stopped the ride momentarily, and a Cast Member came over and reminded the woman and her husband they weren’t allowed to get off the ride while in motion. The Cast Member assured them she could see the watch too, and Disney would return it to them at their hotel.
The woman had good reason to be worried. She had several credit cards linked to the watch, including an American Express card with an unlimited credit line, the report said.
The woman, who was staying at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, filed an incident with Disney Guest Relations to see if anyone had retrieved the fallen watch. She went back later, and no one had turned it in. “The staff advised her that they did not have the watch,” the report said.
Then came the fraud alerts.
The woman “advised that has several fraud alerts throughout the course of the day on her Amex card. According to the victim, there was approximately $40,000 of fraudulent charges on her card,” the report said.
The woman said she shut down the credit cards attached to the missing watch.
The woman wanted to prosecute whoever rang up the charges and contacted the Orange County Sheriff’s Office to report grand theft, according to the report taken April 14. She was told to research the fraudulent charges so authorities could track where the card was used. Disney Security was also notified.
The woman’s name and other information are redacted on the sheriff’s report, which also doesn’t give any indication of what the thief bought for $40,000.