Case of disappearing clothing leads local dry cleaner to make changes to delivery system

UPDATE: It's a problem solved for the customer of a Johnson County dry cleaners. Tim McGuire received a check in the mail this week reimbursing him for his lost clothes.


LENEXA, Kan. --- Tim McGuire, a top executive at a real estate management company, has a closet full of what is essentially his work uniform, tailored shirts and slacks.

But 11 pieces of that "uniform" are missing -- and that's where this problem starts.

McGuire hasn't seen the AWOL clothes since April 10 when he dropped off five shirts and six pairs of slacks at Blue Sky Cleaners in Shawnee. He said he discovered the pieces were missing when he tried to pick them up on April 17.

Tim McGuire

Blue Sky owner John Chalfant promised to track them down.

More than a week later, McGuire said he was informed that his order had been delivered by mistake to his home.

"He said the driver had a sheet with a check mark that said he dropped it off at my house," McGuire said Chalfant told him.

But McGuire, who's never used nor requested home delivery, said no clothes were delivered to his home. He has two security cameras, and neither showed anyone delivering dry cleaning.

Chalfant insisted they had been delivered and must have been stolen off his porch.

Since McGuire couldn't find the clothes, he wanted to be reimbursed for them. Although his clothes were several years old, McGuire said it cost him $1,200 to replace them. McGuire thought he should be reimbursed for at least half of that amount.

John Chalfant

McGuire said the owner told him that if he wanted any money back he would have to report his clothes stolen to Lenexa police. McGuire said he didn't feel comfortable doing that since he can't prove the clothes were ever even delivered.

That's why McGuire called the FOX4 Problem Solvers. We spoke to attorney Scott Shachtman. He thought the dry cleaner was placing too much of the burden for the lost clothes on the customer.

"If they deliver them either to his home by mistake or to some other home by mistake and he's not paying for delivery and he's not asking for delivery, that's not part of the deal and the clothes go missing because of a theft or some other reason, that's on... the dry cleaner," Shachtman said. "That's not on the individual."

But Blue Sky's owner insisted on the police report. He said McGuire didn't need to attest the clothes were stolen from his home, just that they were missing and most likely stolen.

This time McGuire agreed.

The next day, after nearly two months of waiting, McGuire finally received some good news from Blue Sky.

Blue Sky Cleaners in Shawnee

"He has filed the police report so we will honor that and reimburse him for the clothes that are not there," Chalfant said. "It was totally our fault. He did not request a delivery, and we should have never delivered it to him."

But before Chalfant will reimburse McGuire, he wants receipts for all the missing clothes.

McGuire produced those receipts a few days later. Chalfant promised to mail him a refund check by the end of the week.

Chalfant, who said this is the first order he's ever lost out of the thousands of orders he's cleaned, has learned an important lesson from this entire episode. He said he's made changes to his cleaning and delivery system so that no order should ever go missing again.

McGuire, however, has already found a new dry cleaner.

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