Elderly woman, 86, scammed out of $7,000 - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Elderly woman, 86, scammed out of $7,000

By Curtis McCloud -   bio | email

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -  A Columbus woman has lost most of her life savings after she fell victim to a scam.

The 86-year-old woman was deceived by two women Monday afternoon who took $7,000 in cash from her.

It started as a normal trip to the dollar store. Out of fear of retaliation, she did not want to reveal her identity.

She told News Leader 9 that two women met her at a Macon Road Shopping Center as she was heading to her car.  She recounted one of the women telling her, "'Look at what I found laying over here in the street.'   I said, ‘Call the police.'  She said, ‘No, they would take it and keep it.'  I said, ‘No, they wouldn't. Call the police.'"

They would not call the police.  Instead, another woman came to the elderly woman's car and got inside.  She told her that she knew the "manager" inside of TJ Maxx on Macon Road and that he could help them keep the money they had found.

News Leader 9 spoke with the manager at TJ Maxx, who to our surprise was not a man at all.  She referred us to their cooperate office that did not return our call, but issued this statement: "We are cooperating fully with law enforcement and, as this is an ongoing police matter, will not comment further."

According to one of the scammers, the supposed "manager" agreed to help them. Each of the three women would have to produce $7,000 so that he could use that cash to trade with the money inside the bag. That was an attempt to get rid or hide serial numbers that could possibly be traced.  This is where the scam became even more confusing for the victim. 

The women traveled with one of the two scammers to her home and picked up her checkbook. They then went to her bank in Bradley Park to take out the $7,000 dollar, most of her life savings.

She gave the cash to the other women waiting at TJ Maxx, who then took the money inside the store to the supposed "manager". Then asked the victim to come inside and talk to him.

"She [the other woman] said … just go all the way to the back and there is a door. She said, ‘Don't ask for him'. I still didn't think anything about it because…I was brainwashed," said the victim.

When she came out of the store, the two women were gone along with her $7,000 in cash. 

If you have any information about this scam, you are asked to call Columbus Police at (706)653-3400.

Copyright 2011 WTVM. All rights reserved.



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