The art of magic. It's fascinated and fooled generations of willing "victims" through the years. Most of us pay to watch a trained performer execute tricks that seem to defy reality. But in at least one Texas town a magician is using his trickery to line his pockets with ill-gotten gains.

Police in Seguin Texas say a man skilled in sleight of hand has visited a local Walmart store in that town not once but twice. Each time he has used sleight of hand tricks to fool cashiers at the store into giving him more change than he was due.

This video shows just how quickly those skilled in this kind of behavior can get even the most experienced cashier off their game.

This kind of scam is nothing new. Scammers will come into a store and make an inexpensive purchase but pay for that item using a very large bill. This requires the cashier to count out a lot of change. The thief uses sleight of hand to "hide" some of the money he has received. He then recounts the money in front of the cashier and suggests he has been short-changed.

When the cashier hands over the extra money from the "ill-advised shortfall" the thief pockets the difference and walks out with the item and in most cases more money than he walked into the store with. In Seguin, such a scenario has been reported by Walmart employees on January 10th and again on February 12th.

The Seguin Police Department has released photos of the man they are alleging is the sleight of hand thief. The photos come courtesy of Walmart's security cameras. In a post on social media Police jokingly said they would like to "book him for his next magic performance". I think they would just like to book him and make him pay for his crimes.

Towfiqu Barbhuiya via Unsplash.com
Towfiqu Barbhuiya via Unsplash.com
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Meanwhile, now would be a good time for cashiers to review their store's policy regarding how change is given to customers. Police suggest that cashiers place large bills on top of the register and not in the register until the transaction has been completed. They also suggest that change be counted out loud.

Police say should the "customer" start to barrage them with requests for additional transactions the cashier should make every attempt to move through each transaction individually and very methodically. Should the customer become belligerent or aggressive, police suggest the cashier cancel the transaction and call a manager.

Thieves like this prey on individuals who feel flustered or intimidated so it's always a good idea to remember who is in control of the transaction. Police also suggest that if you feel something is "not right" about a transaction. For example, someone is purchasing a package of gum with a $100 bill, it just makes sense to examine the money and be extra careful in the execution of the transaction.

So far police in Seguin have not made any arrests in connection with this case. And don't think this kind of thing only happens in the movies. How do we know? Well, we examined this list and it wasn't on it.

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