Tree trimming scam hits Northeast Ohio

12:43 AM, Aug 23, 2013   |    comments
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NORTH ROYALTON, Ohio -- Distraction crimes have been around for quite some time, but the latest has hit Brecksville, Parma, Parma Heights, North Royalton and Willoughby all in the month of August.

Someone diverts your attention, while an accomplice sneaks in and grabs something quick, then leaves. They typically target senior citizens.

This month, police say it may be a couple posing as tree trimmers.

Ralph Karam, 85, of North Royalton said, "She started going toward the trees but she was talking on a cell phone, I said this doesn't sound right. So I said where's your business card? Let's go get it now. Come walking in the door and there's this guy and I yelled what the hell. What are you doing in my place? Who are you? What are you doing here?"

Karam's outburst scared the two off, but just up the road in Parma Heights, Mary Yaksick didn't get off so easy. There, the thieves took $200 in a matter of minutes. 

Police are looking for a thin, white female in her late 20s and her male accomplice in an unmarked white or grey van. They warn the public to make sure people have correct ID, uniform and marked cars. 

If you feel uneasy, don't open the door and call the police.

Ralph is shaken up, but said he has learned his lesson. "I love Jesus but if he came to the door, I wouldn't let him in the house. Not any more."


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