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Theft by Deception


On January 26th, 2021, at approximately 3:24 pm, the victim contacted the police department advising they were scammed out of money. The victim advised they were attempting to sell an item online for $900. An individual texted the victim advising they were interested in purchasing the item. The individual sent a check to the victim in the amount of $1985.25. The victim contacted the individual and the victim was told the bank made a mistake. The individual told the victim to cash the check and send the overage amount to them via PayPal. The victim did so and learned the check was a fraudulent check after already sending the money. They are out the money which was already sent. The victim was not contacted again about sending the item which was purchased.

This is a common scam involving the selling of items online. Please do your best to vet any individuals who are agreeing to purchase items online. If a check is sent to you with more than the amount agreed upon, usually the check is fraudulent. If you cash the check and send the money out or spend the money, you will be responsible for the money owed back to the bank. Just because the bank will initially credit you the money when depositing a check, does not ultimately mean the check will not later be deemed fraudulent. This is especially true with checks which are deposited through an ATM or when a mobile deposit is submitted.

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