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Vendor Charges $724 for Two Beers, Gets Arrested

Paul Steinbach

A walking vendor at Miami's Hard Rock Stadium was arrested Sunday for charging a fan $724 for two beers during the Dolphins-Chargers game.

Nathaniel Collier faces two felony charges for his alleged scam, according to court records.

According to the Miami Herald, police reported that the 33-year-old vendor took a customer's credit card to charge the person for two beers, which normally equates to a purchase price of around $20. Collier, however, swiped the fan's card using a personal card reader, not the device the stadium provides to vendors, according to the police report. Shortly after the transaction was processed, the fan received an alert from his bank notifying him of the steep charge to his card. It also displayed the vendor’s name.

Collier was not working for Hard Rock Stadium nor the Dolphins, but for Rocket Man, a Kentucky-based subcontractor that employs walking vendors at major sporting events and concerts. He worked as a walking vendor at the stadium for more than a year, police said. He was fired following his arrest, Rocket Man said in a statement, adding that the customer received a full refund.

“As the chosen provider of walking vendors across dozens of stadiums, we take the matter of security extremely seriously, and train and monitor our vendors to safeguard our customers,” the company said. “Our onsite supervisor contacted the authorities immediately upon learning of the overcharge on what was Mr. Collier’s unauthorized personal device.”

Collier faces charges of grand theft and using a skimming device, police said. He was booked into the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center and issued a $10,000 bond.

"Glad to hear that criminal was fired," Jill Pepper, executive director of TEAM Coalition, a non-profit that assists sports entities with alcohol management, told AB Today. "But it reminds us all how tough it is to find good staff. Vending companies need to be able to give their clients — concessionaire, stadium and team — some confidence that they have done background checks on their employees."

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