Desiree is not only upset about something that happened to a friend of hers, she wants to make sure it doesn’t happen to you, so she e-mailed WSB to share the story, so you know what and who to watch for – read on:
I wanted to alert you to a scam artist that may be operating around West Seattle.
I have an elderly friend who lives very close to the Riverview Playfield (I don’t want to give her name or address). Last Thursday, she was working in her back yard during the day, when a man drove through her alley in a white pickup. He struck up a casual conversation with my friend and mentioned that he had done some yard work for her (deceased) husband a few years back. He pointed out that her garage roof needed to be cleaned and partially reshingled and he offered to do this for her. Unfortunately, my friend took him up on his offer. He asked her for a downpayment of $700.00 so that he could buy materials and supplies for the job. She walked into her house to get the cash for him, and he followed her in. After she handed him the money, she asked him for a receipt. He said he had his receipt book in the truck and would go get it. He walked out of her house and quickly drove away.
My friend called the police and filed a report. This same man came back the next morning (Friday), this time knocking on her front door. My friend opened that door wide enough to tell him that she’d called the police the day before. He then took off in a big hurry – she didn’t have time to get his license plate. The police speculate he came back to try to scam more money out of her, because at this point he knew that she had cash in her home.
As I said, my friend is elderly, and she’s on a very fixed income. The $700.00 that he swindled her out of took a long time for her to save. I thought it would be good for WSB readers to know that this occurred. It’s a reminder to us all to be watchful, not just for ourselves but also for our neighbors. My friend isn’t the gullible type and she knows better than to fall for this kind of thing – but he preyed upon her friendliness and lied about doing prior home repairs for her husband. This made her feel like she could trust him.
Her description of the scammer is as follows: Driving a white older pickup, in his mid 50’s, about 5’9″, heavier set, silver hoop earring in left ear, unshaven, white male. I know it’s not much to go on.