Woman chased down trash truck after valuables

By Eric Egan

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- City crews are on patrol, cleaning up curbs as people move out and leave trash behind.

The project has been dubbed, Operation Move Out. But what if that trash is really your treasure? Trash crews have been doing such a quick job cleaning up, that one crew drove away with some pretty valuable stuff Monday. It all ended with a visit to the dump.

Monday morning, Lindsey Shanks was carrying out the last of her things from her home on Warren Street. She says she went back inside for just one more item and came back outside to find it was gone. All she saw was a garbage truck driving away.

"I went after it, full sprint," Shanks said.

Shanks said the truck came by, picked up her trash, but it also grabbed a bin with several valuables. There were pearl earrings, a kindle, family pictures and her iPhone in the bin. She did manage to catch up with the truck and followed it out to city sanitation.

"There were about three or four employees, plus the supervisor and myself in the vest and gloves, sorting through probably 29 blocks of other peoples' trash," Shanks said.

She said she saw the bin but it wasn't in good shape.

"I was not lucky to get everything in one piece, but peace of mind came into play," she said.

Tuesday, people were still loading and unloading homes near the college and there was still a lot of stuff. We're told that if you are moving, you must keep an eye on it.

"With your belongings, if you're not with that, it will be gone. It will be gone," said property owner, Christine Osborne. "So you have to have two people move in."

One to watch and one to move, says Osborne.

Shanks said she's accounted for everything except her phone.

"People I think are aware of that, that people are complacent with their things, moving in and out , and leaving doors unlocked or leaving trucks undone," Shanks said.

Shanks also said the trash crews and supervisor were very helpful in the search for her things.

Operation Move Out teams are made up of a team leader, a police officer and code enforcement officers.