Suspect preying on elderly in Antelope Valley sought
Authorities in Palmdale are asking for the public’s help in finding a woman they believe is preying on elderly people in the Antelope Valley.
According to L.A. County sheriff’s officials in Palmdale, a 70-year-old victim contacted deputies and told them the suspect had tricked him into cashing a forged check for her.
Authorities said the suspect approached the senior in the parking lot of a Palmdale shopping complex and asked him whether he remembered her from a couple of years ago.
The suspect insisted she and the victim had worked together, deputies said.
Embarrassed that he didn’t recognize her, the victim continued his conversation with the suspect, allowing her to obtain his contact information, Deputy Robbie Royster said in a statement.
A few days later, authorities said the suspect contacted the victim and told him she had been robbed and all her identification had been stolen.
The suspect claimed she was unable to send money to her family in El Salvador and convinced the victim to cash an $800 payroll check for her at his bank, because she had no form of ID, Royster said.
The bank later contacted the victim and informed him the check he had deposited was counterfeit and that he would be responsible for the amount of money he had withdrawn during the transaction, Royster said.
Authorities believe that although they currently have only one confirmed victim, the suspect might be using this scam throughout the Antelope Valley on unsuspecting elderly victims, Royster said.
They did not provide a detailed description of the suspect.
Anyone who might have been a victim of a similar crime or might have information on the suspect is asked to contact sheriff’s detectives at (661) 272-2466. Individuals can also provide information anonymously through Crime Stoppers by calling (800) 222- 8477.
-- Ann M. Simmons