A letter to a stethoscope thief

Dear Douchebag;

You stole my stethoscope.

Granted, I left it on the truck over night, so I bear some responsibility for your theft of my stethoscope, but you still stole it.

It was underneath the control panel in the back when I got off the truck, and you were the only one who got anywhere near it over 12 hours. As a matter of fact, your partner that you worked with that night said you were the only one who even got in the back.

Nobody climbed into the back of the ambulance while you were posted, or at a hospital, to steal my stethoscope, and only my stethoscope, leaving the good drugs in the box.

You kind of gave it away when you took off real quick this morning.

My stethoscope is a 27 inch Littman Master Cardiology black edition. My wife gave it to me for Christmas. She also personalized it by purchasing the red binaurals with the grey eartips. So it’s unique. Nobody else has one like it. But you wouldn’t know that, since you are the kind of person who would steal another medic’s stethoscope.

And I took it to a jeweler to have my name engraved on it. Not on the chest piece, but inside. If you don’t know it’s there, you would never look for it.

I am going to catch you with my stethoscope at work, and I am going to take it back.

And then I am going to expose you for the stethoscope thief that you are.

It’s mine, and I want it back.




  1. Remote Medic says:

    Somethings are sacred and should not be messed with. A scope is like a mans car, you just don’t mess with it. Much luck in getting it back !

  2. It saddens me to think that such people exist at all, leave alone be colleagues. Been there, had it, had it stolen. Not nice. Not nice at all… Good luck!

  3. txirishmedic says:

    It is sad how often things get stolen off of trucks. From equipment like head blocks to a man’s scope. I too had mine stolen but thankfully the supervisor who did it actually returned it, after I confronted him about it in a room full of people.

    Might I suggest that you report the theft to law enforcement to make a report. If this individual actually took it, he should be arrested and have his patch removed. We do not need people like this in our field.

    • Reporting it to the police is actually in the works. I have informed the appropriate managment personnel of the situation, and in turn, I was asked to wait several days prior to filing a report.

      We have a mini ‘investigation’ going on here.

    • Shannon Kisch says:

      Makes you wonder, if they are brave enough to steal from a co-worker, what is stopping them from stealing from a patient?

  4. Mama first Medic next says:

    I have to agree with remote medic, stethoscopes are sacred. Mine was a gift from my Pepa (grandmother) who has since passed away, I will take you out over it! Hope you get it back CCC, and that the thief suffers at least humiliation.

    I also have to say in that last week I have read this entire blog, love it! Keep it up

  5. David Weiss says:

    If you don’t get your scope back, let me know I have “retired” and have a couple Master and Cardiology II’s. Let me know especially color, I have mostly Black but I will see what I can do! I absolutely feel for you, I have had mine stolen more than once, usually by a doctor or nurse!
    Retired Paramedic

  6. Mine got cannibalized at work— made me mad- my first 2 were 26 years old and finally gave up the ghost- I had to buy a new one. It was my new one- that I came into work and found that not only did someone take the ring off the diaphragm- they took the diaphragm– and I am not getting little stethoscopes running around. Littmann’s are expensive enough without having to buy and replace parts- So now I have 3 Littmanns — none work and well- I am not a happy person.

    • I Have Read The Letter And All Of The Responses, And I Feel For You All. But I Have Owned Littmann Scopes (Several Of Them) And Yes They Are Expensive. But I Solved My Theft Problems, I Started Use Sprague Type Scope, I Have NEVER Had On Of Them Stolen Or Stripped. After 30 Years In EMS & Rescue, I Have Determined, At Least For Me That The Sprague Scope Are Far Superior For Use On The Ambulances, For Exterior Sound Suppression, In Listen To Various Bodily Sounds, I Have Never Missed Even Slight Sounds. But That Is Just My Opinion, I’m Sure EVERYBODY Has Their Own. It REALLY Suck In My Opinion Considering What We Do That We Actually Have Thieves Among Us


  7. Carol Brown says:

    Gah, I have had my scop stolen at least four times. The first one did mean something to me, the next three I bought sort of cheap but still… Damn. Get your own dang scopes right? The last one I got was sparkly and gold glittered. Maybe that’ll keep them at bay.

  8. Lisa Walker says:

    I hope you get it back and kudos to you to have it engraved.
    Yes, the PERP who took it should be charged, I’m sorry if that bothers anyone, but, if this person will steal from co-workers, what’s to stop them from stealing from patients ?? We, as a profession, do not need people jeapordizing the public’s trust in their EMS responders.

  9. So this does not only happen in South Africa! Left my Littmann on a friends van a few years ago after assising him at a event, phoned the next day and recieved many denials – goodbye Littmann.

    Why don’t they steal the spragues?

  10. I had three Littmann scopes “grow legs,” I feel your pain! However, the last scope that I bought was in this terrible bright pink. I’ve had it two years now. 🙂

  11. Scott Saunders says:

    Why do people see the need to nick other peoples medical equipment? Those who have personalised equipment and that which has sentimental value are more valued then to the owner. Just cannot see why someone would swipe it, it just goes to show the kind of world we live in if you cant trust the person you roll with on a truck. Sad really, I hope you catch the scumbag. I would use harsher words. If you catch the looser make sure you name and shame him or her. It`ll come to the point one day where we have to start putting pad locks on our kits and equipment to stop people swiping things. Whats next, are they going to swipe the truck from under your backside?!?!

  12. Angel Acevedo says:

    I had mine stolen from me it was my first scope got it as a gift it went to ground zero with me( hell) ,mvc, roll overs ,chest pains, and yes my tummy hurts after a double I left it on the dash it was gone it was not as nice as ours but it was mine it was a littmann and I miss it had it so long it a permanent bend in it so I feel your pain hope you get it was ack

  13. I have had several stolen out of the truck. Also had a pair of Oakley sunglasses stolen. But my first littman was the hardest since it was a medics school present. Hope you get yours back.

  14. That sucks!! I’ve had my Littman since I was an EMT, a gift from my father. He said “if it’s good enough for the chief, it’s good enough for you.” I’ve had it for 22 years now. I feel your pain. If I lost it I’d be beyond angry. I don’t know what brings people to steal the property of others but I do hope you get it back. How sad is it that we can’t trust our coworkers to do the right thing ?

  15. Do let us know how it turns out.
    It really sucks knowing that people you work with are dishonest, especially if you can’t do anything about it. I hope your supervisor(s) deal appropriately with the situation.

  16. An old AF friend bought mine as a present for me…knowing my crazy ass…he bought me one that has a flamingo painted inside the diaphragm housing. And, it has super hot pink tubing, so you can’t miss it, and I have to say, I would pull out some a** kicking if anyone tried to take it (oops…he tripped?)
    Hope the jerk gets prosecuted…one way or the other.

  17. If you can’t trust a person not to steal another medic’s personal equipment from a truck, I wouldn’t trust that person not to take advantage of an opportunity to steal from the company, a patient, a hospital, or any place else. I am not merciful about this sort of situation.

    I truly hope you find this because it means more to you than money.

    Your threat to report this to the police is a good strategy inasmuch as it puts a burden on the company to actually do something instead of washing their hands of it and saying, “too bad, so sad,” and acting as though they don’t have a thief in the company.

    At my company, I received a desperate call from a medic who was being accused of stealing narcotics. The control fo the drug boxes was very lax (still is) and he had apparently been the last person recorded to have contact with the drug box. Not that anyone couldn’t have gotten the unit keys and gone into the truck. He was upset because they had said they were going to fire him. I told him to call the local police department to report a theft of narcotics and to tell the company that if they were going to fire him for it, he was reporting it to the police. Well, that set them back because the last thing they wanted was a review of their drug box management, so they backpedaled in a hurry and the whole thing went away.

    • Furthermore, you bear NO responsibility for the actions of a thief. You are responsible for leaving it on the truck, which is no big deal. They bear ALL the responsibility for the theft. They leave their car in the parking lot. Does that mean anyone can take it because they leave it there.

      I am not merciful as I said.

  18. The funniest thing happened. I left mine in the back at the end of shift because I was coming back in 24 hrs. The only thing was that a student took mine and I knew it because he left in the middle of the night. The crew found out he left because he left a note on the dining table saying he grabbed all his tools out of the back and thanked them for everything. Hmmmmm, now the reason why I know he took it because the crew that relieved me happened to be very close fiends! Gotta love it!

  19. Damn thieves! I got mine from my dad…way before I started working in the field. I was about 16 yrs old. He gave it to me as a “I believe you can do it.” I use it everyday now, and if it disappeared…. let’s just say I would not be too happy. It sucks not to be able to trust those u work with. My boyfriend recently went to purchase me a new one, and I turned him down. Its kinda like naming your first junk car :). Im fine with my old, but oh so wonderful Littman! Hope u get it back.

  20. It’s just sad to know that someone would steal from a co-worker and that they would lie about taking it. It’s not the integrity or professionalism that we should have in EMS. Are things like this related to the fact we eat our young? or that we’re often over worked and under trained? that a 68-75% is a horrible score, despite possibly passing the registry and it often puts people in a bad place.

  21. I’m glad you’re in the process of reporting it to the police. This person needs to know his actions will not be tolerated.
    Once convicted…. Let him or her find another EMS job. With a conviction, that will be impossible.
    I have 3 scopes that were given to me by special people. My Parents gave me my first one when I got my first job in EMS. My Aunt, the only nurse in our family, bought me one as a gift when I finished Intermediate training and passed my license exam. And my brother rand sister bought me one for Christmas one year. Custom and engraved with my name and title at the time. I used every one of them, cherish each of them, and if anyone stole one of them….. They had better hope I never found out who it was.
    I have since retired from EMS. (bad knees and back) and I do miss it. I still have all 3 of my scopes after all these years. I know what mine meant and still mean to me, so I know what your’s means to you. Please keep us posted on how this comes out.

  22. My scope was stolen a few years ago and it forced me to get my super old scope out of retirement. A scope is a tool, a friend, and it is dependable. Its unfortunate that someone stole your scope, I hope that person turns it in and apologizes to you. If that person is reading this thread, I have some words for you: Return the scope.. apologize, then beg for eternal forgiveness because God seen you steal a piece of equipment that is used to save a life.

  23. Another EMT says:

    Although I have never had a scope stolen I know several who have. I however got one which required the use of headphones and the knowledge to then turn it on. I love it. I can hear everything. Good luck getting yours back and hope the guy who has it gets what he deserves.

  24. I hope you found your stethoscope. I just recently had something very valuable stolen on an ambulance and know the feeling.

  25. Augusta says:

    CCC, what was the outcome???

    • After calling out the thief for being a thief, it was returned within a week. Apparently it was “found in an ambulance.”


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