3 On Your Side

Peoria man says his tablet 'exploded'

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Bob LeBrec said his Galaxy Note exploded but Samsung wouldn't give him a new tablet. (Source: 3TV) Bob LeBrec said his Galaxy Note exploded but Samsung wouldn't give him a new tablet. (Source: 3TV)
LeBrec says he and his wife contacted Samsung, which asked them to send the burned device to them. They did, but they were a little shocked by Samsung's response. (Source: 3TV) LeBrec says he and his wife contacted Samsung, which asked them to send the burned device to them. They did, but they were a little shocked by Samsung's response. (Source: 3TV)
He showed us photos he took after he put out the burning gadget. (Source: 3TV) He showed us photos he took after he put out the burning gadget. (Source: 3TV)
(3 ON YOUR SIDE) -

A Peoria man says his Samsung Galaxy Note tablet inexplicably caught fire recently. 

“Intense heat! Unbelievable. I couldn't believe what I was seeing,” Bob LaBrec said.

LaBrec is still shocked as he shows photos of his Samsung Tablet and its remnants. 

LaBrec says he usually kept the tablet stored in his home office and when he entered the room recently, he says there was a strange odor.

“I was shocked to walk up into that room and it had a certain smell, a funny smell. I was looking around, didn't know what it was. I looked over at the tablet and it looked like a football, it was all swollen up!” LaBrec said.

LaBrec says he immediately took it out of the room and ran it downstairs.

"And I see little smoke rings start to swirl up. I picked it up after that and put it out in my garage or walked it through the garage, put it outside and no sooner I put it on the ground than it exploded! I mean it actually looked like a rocket shooting off. The flames were higher than the garbage cans," LaBrec said. 

He showed us photos he took after he put out the burning gadget. 

“I didn't know what I was looking at. I mean, I could realize it was a fire and it was my tablet but it was something out of Hollywood,” LaBrec said.

LaBrec says he and his wife contacted Samsung, which asked them to send the burned device to them. They did, but they were a little shocked by Samsung's response.

“Well for a hundred and some dollars more we can give you a refurbished unit or whatever, and me and my wife emailed them and said we're not going to accept that,” LaBrec said.

So, 3 On Your Side got involved and we contacted Samsung which was very responsive and contacted LaBrec right away to make things right.

“It's kinda funny, when you were here, Channel 3 was here one day, the very next day we heard from Samsung,” LaBrec said. 

LaBrec says Samsung was apologetic and sent a check for $564, the amount that LaBrec says he paid for the tablet. He says it only happened with the help of 3 On Your Side.

“We couldn't have done it without 3 On Your Side. They would have brushed us off, I’m sure they would've,” LaBrec said.

Samsung was very responsive to 3 On Your Side and they were eager to make things right, which is appreciated. 

A Samsung spokesperson provided the following statement: 

“Samsung stands behind the quality and safety of the many Galaxy tablets in the U.S. We have reached out to Mr. LaBrec to provide support and learn more about what happened. This is an extremely rare incident and we are investigating the circumstances surrounding the occurrence. Tablets are complex devices and there are many factors that could contribute to their malfunction. Any customer who has questions about a Samsung product should contact us directly at 1-800-SAMSUNG.”

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LiAna EnriquezLiAna Enriquez is a native of Arizona. She attended Marcos de Niza High School in Tempe, Arizona.

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LiAna Enriquez

She then went on to Arizona State University. She graduated summa cum laude from the University’s prestigious, Walter Cronkite School of Journalism with a degree in Journalism/Mass Communications with an emphasis in broadcasting.

LiAna started her news career with KTVK-TV as an intern. She loved it so much she never left! She has been with the station for fourteen years. Currently, she is the consumer investigative producer for Arizona’s top rated consumer segment, 3 On Your Side and is also a general assignment reporter. LiAna also reported for the station’s top rated high school sports show, ‘The Varsity Zone’ for five years.

In her free time LiAna enjoys cooking, watching movies, quading, and traveling. But her absolute favorite thing to do, is to hang out with her husband and beautiful daughters. She is a softball mom. She loves the beach and waterfalls! Her favorite team is the Arizona Cardinals and of course, the Sun Devils.

Life motto: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)

If you have a story idea for LiAna, Send her an email .

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Gary HarperGary Harper is the senior consumer and investigative reporter for 3 On Your Side at KTVK-TV.

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Gary Harper
3 On Your Side

With more than 20 years of television experience, Gary has established himself as a leader in the industry when it comes to assisting viewers and resolving their consumer-related issues. His passion and enthusiasm have helped him earn an Emmy for Best Consumer Reporter from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He’s also garnered several Emmy nominations

He has negotiated resolutions with companies of all sizes, including some of the biggest corporations in the nation.

Gary has successfully recouped more than $1 million for viewers around the state, making 3 On Your Side one of the most popular segments on KTVK and the station's Web site.

He's best known for investigating and confronting unscrupulous contractors. In fact, many of his news reports have led to police investigations and jail time for those who were caught. Viewers, as well as the companies and people he investigates, regard him as consistently being thorough and fair.

Gary has been with KTVK-TV since 1997. Prior to his arrival in Phoenix, he worked for WZZM-TV in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he was as an anchor and reporter.

Gary is from Chicago, but launched his television career in Lubbock, Texas, after earning a broadcast journalism degree from Texas Tech University. Following his graduation, he was quickly hired by KLBK-TV in Lubbock, where he enterprised and broke numerous exclusive reports. His aggressive reporting in Texas helped garner him Best Reporter by the Associated Press.

Gary has been married since 1994 and is the proud father of two sons. When he's not helping viewers, Gary is busy catching up on his favorite college and professional football teams as well as cheering on his beloved Texas Tech Red Raiders.

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