ppod_citn-728x90
ppod_citn-320x100

Walmart-Hydroxycut coupon

It’s not a good time to be a coupon-glitching Walmart cashier. Right on the heels of an Iowa cashier’s sentencing for helping a customer use coupons on the wrong products, a Walmart cashier in Wisconsin has been arrested and charged with taking advantage of a particularly infamous – and lucrative – glitch, to the tune of about $5,000.

42-year-old Brenda Fry was charged last week with felony theft by false representation, nearly six months after she allegedly misused hundreds of Hydroxycut coupons to get thousands of dollars in overage.

Remember those Hydroxycut coupons? Members of various online “glitch groups” sure do. They discovered last summer, that high-value coupons offering $5 or $10 off specific Hydroxycut diet supplements would scan and be accepted on just about anything the company made – including Hydroxycut protein bars that sell at Walmart for just 98 cents apiece.

Police in Lake Delton, Wisconsin say Fry got a hold of plenty of those high-value coupons, bought plenty of protein bars, and scanned them all herself at a self-checkout machine. Using coupons for $5 off one, or $10 off two Hydroxycut products, while actually purchasing 98-cent protein bars, she allegedly netted up to $8 in “free money” for each coupon she used. That overage could then be used to purchase anything else in the store.

According to the criminal complaint, Fry told police that she learned about the glitch from a customer, who “told her about coupons that can be used for ‘glitching’ and that the information is on Facebook.” Fry claimed “she didn’t know she was doing anything wrong in the beginning,” since she said both the customer and a customer service manager were using coupons the same way. “There were several other coupons that work like this,” she advised police, including a $4 Almay coupon that could be used on a trial-sized product selling for $1.25, even though the terms printed on the coupon forbade it. The glitching customer, she said, “was going to teach her more about how these worked.”

But she appeared to have done just fine on her own, allegedly using the coupons during her break or after work. She was also rewarded by her glitching customer, with free snacks and a gift card.

Fry stands accused of being just one of many who misused the Hydroxycut coupons before retailers and Hydroxycut manufacturer Iovate Health Sciences figured out what had hit them. “I purchased 6 of the 98-cent individual protein bars. Used 3 of the $10/2 Hydroxycut coupons. No issues with them scanning,” one glitch group member reported to her fellow glitchers last summer.

336x280-CITN-3

It turns out that not only were the coupons’ bar codes programmed to scan on any Hydroxycut product (despite wording on the coupons that excluded protein bars), the coupons were also programmed not to expire – ever. So the more $5 and $10 coupons that Iovate issued, the more coupons that glitchers were able to misuse, indefinitely.

Most chose to misuse them at Walmart, since the store offers that perfect storm of a coupon policy that allows overage, and self-checkout machines that allow glitchers to scan their products and coupons unsupervised, then often get away undetected.

But unlike the dozens, hundreds or thousands of glitch group members who misused the Hydroxycut coupons and took off with their overage without getting caught, Walmart knew precisely where to find Fry once they figured out what was going on. An internal investigation determined that she had allegedly used the coupons to amass $4,779 in overage.

If convicted, Fry faces a maximum sentence of 3 1/2 years in prison and $10,000 in fines, in addition to any restitution she may be ordered to pay to Walmart. She’s scheduled to make her initial appearance in court on March 9th.

In the meantime, Iovate has long since invalidated all of its coupons. It issued alerts to retailers nationwide last September, informing them that none of its coupons were to be accepted anymore. And it hasn’t issued a coupon since.

So not only are glitchers no longer able to get paid four bucks for every protein bar they “buy”, but legitimate Hydroxycut users are stuck having to pay full retail for their products.

And people like Fry may end up being the ones who pay the price.

Background photo by JeepersMedia

7 Comments

  1. Maybe Walmart should pay their employees a decent wage then they wouldn’t be tempted to do such things. Not to mention, I think it’s petty and a complete waste of time on local law enforcement to be dealing with so called coupon fraud rather than murders and drug dealers and child molesters. Where I life murders happen On The daily…but yeah let’s waste the cops, and courts time with this B.S….maybe these companies should spend d more time figuring out how to not let it happen in the future…. Or better yet, charge a reasonable amount for products instead of being greedy. Ridiculous

    • How did I know a stupid comment like this would be posted. They get paid well for what they do. Maybe check it out before posting? This is a crime and should not be excused.

  2. Your arrogant and ignorant all in the same breath. Like pointing out some one else’s grammatical errors discredited what they say. What’s your special interest that derives your unreasonable judgement against couponer? Couponers are not criminals. Couponing is a game created by the elite manufacturers and they don’t like being beat at the scam that they created do they??!! They are way to many average people trying to survive for theses companies to continue to win. Sure they could stop producing coupons all together, BUT both you and I know if they do, their profit margin will drop massively. People are already becoming more independent from the store shelf.

  3. Wal-Mart is crooked as all hell in this. They allow coupons & overage in their policy to begin with. Retail price is highway robbery even at Wal-Mart. Then they want prosecute a few smart people for finding a few loop holes in the couponing GAME that was created by manufacturers and companies to begin with. They meet on jeckyl island in Georgia for the coupon press company varsassis to plan their consumer scam out and people are onto it and getting smarter about this whole corporate retail con and they don’t like it now so they!!?? How about we point the finger at corporate greed and theft instead of the poor people trying to get around them. Their is theft against the consumer far more than the retailer and manufacturers. Fyi you can point out all grammatical errors you want to try to divert, discredit and instill fear in the poor couponers, but the reality here is obvious. Stop ripping people off at the cash register with jacked up pricing that’s beyond what your willing to pay consumers and the problems walmart, Procter & gamble,unilever and all other retail companies supposedly have will cease! Big boys don’t like being beat at their own GAME and what to scare the little guy into letting them continue winning this coupon game THEY created! Unfortunately there is way more of us than of you elites your not going to win.

  4. I am so glad retailers and manufacturers are starting to press charges on the scammers. For a long time the accepted plan from retailers was just to tighten rules and treat all couponers like criminals.

    Tom, I would have read your whole novel, if you would have at least attempted some paragraphs.

  5. There is far more to this than the police and Walmart have released.Fry was approached by a customer during checkout,where the customer then used this coupon.Fry was then asked if she and others working would like to learn about couponing,diverting attention to coupon shows that explain how to use coupons to fill your cart and owe nothing.This customer went to several employees including higher level employees to explain the coupon.At no point during this did Walmart put a stop to it.They were aware of it for several weeks.It was this customer who would then come in with hundreds if not thousands of these coupons over several weeks,admitting to doing the same at several retailers in the area.The customer would then look for the employees she had talked to about couponing previously,and go through their checkouts.She would then hand the employee a coupon or two as a friendly gesture for taking interest in couponing.This customer would have taken tens of thousands worth of product from area stores.Using the same scam.Fry and other employees couldn’t have received more than 50 coupons from the customer each during this period.50 coupons used by an employee would mean they bought $50 of protein bars to receive $250 of credit.Walmart is claiming Fry is the ring leader,and have completely dismmised the customer in question in any reports.I am assuming because they wish to avoid possible media backlash for arresting customers for using coupons.So they are instead aiming all attention at Fry,a former employee.Fry would have had to use over 1200 coupons to amass the $5000 Walmart is claiming she was credited.That would have been buying $1200 of protein bars…its an unbelievable claim.The very economics of it is absurd.To suggest that an employee at Walmart has the finances to spend $1200 in a few weeks on candy bars.Her wages couldn’t have been half that.No ,Walmart is trying to get reimbursed from the point that Hydroxycut stopped honoring the coupon,and pinning that amount from the customers and employees to Fry.They are using her as bait,instead of coming forward with the fact that they were aware for weeks and could have taken everyone aside quickly to point out the coupons and what to watch for.Instead they want to put someone who truly thought it was legit in prison.Walmart will claim that ignorance is no excuse as it pertains to Fry,but how about them when it pertains to allowing it so long.To let employees see that you shrugged your shoulders to it,and looked the other way,assuring unsuspecting employees that it was OK?Much more will come out of this.Some people are gullible and trusting by nature.Fry falls well into this category.Looking to others to know what’s right and wrong.The customer took advantage of this.Fry even used her bank card when she would use the coupon,on her own breaks.That is not the actions of someone trying to steal.That is someone who legitimately was convinced it was OK.I just can’t believe the police and Walmart would blister someone publicly so badly,while they have the actual story kicked under their rug.Lawyers are gonna go straight for that rug.

    • if she spent 50 then it would be 200 dollars left over, but very interesting.
      Coupon lovers on here mainly, so they would likely defend the customer in this,but even then there are bad apples.Sounds like this customer was out of control.Makes good people trying to save a dollar look bad.
      Hope the truth comes out.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

Privacy Policy
Disclosure Policy