PALMDALE – Do you recognize the woman in this photo? If so, Palmdale detectives would like to hear from you. They say the 50-year-old Hispanic female scammed an elderly man out of his money in November. Detectives believe the women may be using a similar scam to prey on elderly victims throughout the Antelope Valley.
The following is the press report from the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station:
Palmdale Detectives are seeking the public’s help in identifying a suspect they believe is preying on elderly individuals in the Antelope Valley area.
In mid-November Palmdale Station was contacted by a victim, who told deputies that the suspect, described as a 50-year-old Hispanic female with brown hair and brown eyes, had tricked him into cashing a forged check for her.
The 70-year-old victim was in the parking lot of a Palmdale shopping complex when the suspect approached him. The suspect flagged down the victim asking if he remembered her from a couple of years ago. The suspect insisted they had worked together in the past.
Feeling embarrassed he didn’t recognize the victim, he continued his conversation with her, in which the suspect was able to obtain the victim’s contact information.
A few days later the suspect contacted the victim stating she had just recently been robbed and all of her identification had been stolen. This left the suspect in a situation in which she was unable to get money to her family in El Salvador. The suspect convinced the victim to cash a payroll check for her because she had no form of identification.
The suspect accompanied the victim to the bank where he cashed an $800 check and withdrew the maximum allowed on the deposit. The suspect told the victim she would call him in a day or two to retrieve the remainder of the cash.
The victim was later contacted by his bank and informed that the check he had deposited was counterfeit and he would be responsible for the amount of money he had withdrawn during the transaction.
Detectives believe that while they currently only have one confirmed victim, the suspect might be using this scam throughout the Antelope Valley on unsuspecting elderly victims.
Palmdale Station is asking the community that if they have been a victim of a similar crime or have any information on whom the suspect is, to contact Detective Rios at 661-272-2466. Individuals can also provide information anonymously through “Crime Stoppers” by dialing 800-222-TIPS (8477), texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637), or using the website lacrimestoppers.org.