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November 19, 2017, 11:45:21 pm
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Author Topic: $17 dollar con artist  (Read 4032 times)
PonderInc
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« on: November 15, 2007, 05:01:57 pm »

Hey, I just had the "$17 Dollar Con Artist" pay a visit!  He rang the doorbell and introduced himself as Andrew McCollum (or something), shook my hand, and said "I live 4 doors down, you probably see my wife and me out walking the dog."  At which point, b/c I'm too polite to tell people I don't know who the heck they are, I said, "Oh yeah."  (I know 95% of my neighbors, but there are a couple houses in the direction he pointed that I don't know....so I gave him the benefit of the doubt.)

He then gave me this story about having AAA come out to replace a wheel rim on his truck or something and how he needed $17.  He pulled out a wad of cash to show me that he had most of the money needed, but was just a little short.

At this point, little tiny bells started ringing, b/c, although I'm slow and naive, I've been around.  First off, nobody does this except con artists...nobody shows you the money they already have.  Also, if you have AAA, you don't pay a dime, you flash your card, they write down the number and off you go.  Plus, in this neighborhood, if I needed $20 (or a cup of sugar) I wouldn't need to walk down the street to a stranger's house.  I wouldn't have to go further than one door in any direction...and I wouldn't have to introduce myself.  Also, he had "workman's hands"...the kind you get from doing manual labor or carpentry all the time.  My neighborhood is full of white collar desk jockies.  (Even the shade-tree mechanics have desk jobs.)  He said several other things that were reasonable, but just a half-bubble off.

In any case, I told him I was sorry but I didn't have any cash.  When he walked away, he went in the opposite direction of his supposed house.  Which also struck me as odd.

I called a friend and told her that I'd just had a visit from a con artist.  She immediately said: "The $17 dollar guy?"  Which blew me away.  She said she'd just gotten an email about this guy, and that the city was trying to get a license tag for him.  So I jumped in my car looking for the guy.  Of course, he was long gone.  (I live on a corner, and I bet he intentionally picks corner houses so he can park around to the side, but approach your house as if on foot.)

Since then, I've learned that this guy is all over the news, and everyone has heard about him but me!  (Maybe I should watch local news afterall.) (Nah...)

So that's my brush with fame.  He was no Robert Redford in "The Sting."  But he wasn't scummy looking either.  He was very polite, and much less annoying than any telemarketer I've ever tried to get rid of.  

But a con is still a con.
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Conan71
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« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2007, 05:10:34 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by PonderInc

Hey, I just had the "$17 Dollar Con Artist" pay a visit!  He rang the doorbell and introduced himself as Andrew McCollum (or something), shook my hand, and said "I live 4 doors down, you probably see my wife and me out walking the dog."  At which point, b/c I'm too polite to tell people I don't know who the heck they are, I said, "Oh yeah."  (I know 95% of my neighbors, but there are a couple houses in the direction he pointed that I don't know....so I gave him the benefit of the doubt.)

He then gave me this story about having AAA come out to replace a wheel rim on his truck or something and how he needed $17.  He pulled out a wad of cash to show me that he had most of the money needed, but was just a little short.

At this point, little tiny bells started ringing, b/c, although I'm slow and naive, I've been around.  First off, nobody does this except con artists...nobody shows you the money they already have.  Also, if you have AAA, you don't pay a dime, you flash your card, they write down the number and off you go.  Plus, in this neighborhood, if I needed $20 (or a cup of sugar) I wouldn't need to walk down the street to a stranger's house.  I wouldn't have to go further than one door in any direction...and I wouldn't have to introduce myself.  Also, he had "workman's hands"...the kind you get from doing manual labor or carpentry all the time.  My neighborhood is full of white collar desk jockies.  (Even the shade-tree mechanics have desk jobs.)  He said several other things that were reasonable, but just a half-bubble off.

In any case, I told him I was sorry but I didn't have any cash.  When he walked away, he went in the opposite direction of his supposed house.  Which also struck me as odd.

I called a friend and told her that I'd just had a visit from a con artist.  She immediately said: "The $17 dollar guy?"  Which blew me away.  She said she'd just gotten an email about this guy, and that the city was trying to get a license tag for him.  So I jumped in my car looking for the guy.  Of course, he was long gone.  (I live on a corner, and I bet he intentionally picks corner houses so he can park around to the side, but approach your house as if on foot.)

Since then, I've learned that this guy is all over the news, and everyone has heard about him but me!  (Maybe I should watch local news afterall.) (Nah...)

So that's my brush with fame.  He was no Robert Redford in "The Sting."  But he wasn't scummy looking either.  He was very polite, and much less annoying than any telemarketer I've ever tried to get rid of.  

But a con is still a con.



I read that and thought: "Andrew McCollum, isn't he running for city council, the Senate or some such thing, what's the big deal?".

I'll let you know if I see this goon.
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"It has been said that politics is the second oldest profession. I have learned that it bears a striking resemblance to the first” -Ronald Reagan
LisaPeace
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« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2007, 07:56:28 pm »

He hit our house on 16th St. last week (near Utica).
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waterboy
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« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2007, 07:57:16 pm »

Thanks for the tip. And great insights you had!

Another slick trick happened to a friend of mine recently. She pulled her mini-van full of kids into a QT to get gas and after she started the pump using her debit card, the kids wanted soft drinks. So she left the oldest kid in the car transfixed with his gameboy and took the other three in to get drinks.

When she came out she noted that the pump was around 20 gallons and shut it off. After driving a few blocks she noted the fuel tank only registered barely above "E". Then it dawned on her. Someone in the vehicle next to her had waited till she was pre-occupied with the kids and quickly slipped the pump into his vehicle. They put it back when they saw her at the counter and drove away.

Required patience, timing, bravado and possibly a lookout. I miss the old days with a real service attendant. Still available at 21st & Lewis.
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Conan71
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« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2007, 08:43:09 pm »

Gas pump theft will continue to happen with fuel prices.

I wonder what happens if you offer this slick gentleman $8.50?  Or really confuse him and tell him you have to deduct state, federal, FICA, etc.  Get your calculator out and keep him at your door long enough for the cops to show up. [Wink]
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"It has been said that politics is the second oldest profession. I have learned that it bears a striking resemblance to the first” -Ronald Reagan
inteller
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« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2007, 09:23:49 pm »

he came by my house but he didn't accept PayPal so I couldn't help him.
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cannon_fodder
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« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2007, 08:56:41 am »

Awesome.

Who the hell tries to con people out of $17?

Great job tracking down the con too.
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HoneySuckle
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« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2007, 09:13:48 am »

$17?  Good grief.  They'll try anything.

Good job handling this creep.
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Hawkins
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« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2007, 11:00:19 am »

quote:
Originally posted by HoneySuckle

$17?  Good grief.  They'll try anything.

Good job handling this creep.



He's probably thinking that if he can hit 10 houses in an hour, that's $170/hour.

Not a bad wage, and probably the reason he has a stack of cash. [}:)]
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TURobY
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« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2008, 08:59:57 pm »

He literally stopped here 15 mins ago. I called the non-emergency police to let them know that he was in the area.
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---Robert
Conan71
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« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2008, 10:22:37 pm »

Pretty sure you and I live a few blocks apart from previous conversations on here.  Have you ever been hit up by the deaf guy on the bicycle?  We had a consistent problem w/ him on my block until a few of the neighbors started showing him firearms through the front window.  Worked great, even though they were only cap guns.  [8D]

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"It has been said that politics is the second oldest profession. I have learned that it bears a striking resemblance to the first” -Ronald Reagan
TURobY
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« Reply #11 on: March 21, 2008, 11:02:43 pm »

quote:
Originally posted by Conan71

Pretty sure you and I live a few blocks apart from previous conversations on here.  Have you ever been hit up by the deaf guy on the bicycle?  We had a consistent problem w/ him on my block until a few of the neighbors started showing him firearms through the front window.  Worked great, even though they were only cap guns.  [8D]



Yeah, I live accross the way in Renaissance. Haven't gotten the deaf guy...
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---Robert
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« Reply #12 on: March 22, 2008, 09:09:41 am »

quote:
Originally posted by Conan71

Pretty sure you and I live a few blocks apart from previous conversations on here.  Have you ever been hit up by the deaf guy on the bicycle?  We had a consistent problem w/ him on my block until a few of the neighbors started showing him firearms through the front window.  Worked great, even though they were only cap guns.  [8D]






Such a display of sophistication and class. I can't for the life of me understand how Tulsa gets its hick reputation? [Tongue]
« Last Edit: March 22, 2008, 09:10:25 am by TheArtist » Logged

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dsjeffries
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« Reply #13 on: March 23, 2008, 12:27:44 am »

You know, with all the people on here who've encountered him, we could set up a map and track his next moves! [Cheesy]
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izmophonik
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« Reply #14 on: March 23, 2008, 08:30:15 pm »

I see him about once a month.  He knows me now so he uses different stories.  He seems to float around midtown a lot.  The last one he used was where he needed $20.00 and he would pay me double when he got his money.  The time before that, he had a flat on his BMW (lol) and needed money for his tow.  The funny part is that all BMW's have real spares in the trunk.  I told him this and he just walked away.
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