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Ongoing Housing Scam for Prospective RentersSalem-News.com
Many victims and over $10,000 in cash scammed
(McMINNVILLE OR) - McMinnville Police received information regarding a possible fraud complaint in late July, involving the rental/lease of a residence on SW Manzanita Street in McMinnville. A female victim contacted the police department and advised that she responded to an advertisement for a residence for rent/lease.
The victim described meeting with a male, who identified himself as Jerry Carpenter, who agreed to lease the residence to her. The victim gave Jerry more than $1000.00 in cash deposits and rent and signed a rental agreement. The victim noted that, after providing money to Jerry, she recognized some indicators that led her to believe she was potentially being scammed.
Later the same day, a second victim reported a nearly identical situation. The victim reported providing Jerry Carpenter with a cash deposit of more than $1000.00 to secure renting the same residence as the previous victim.
This victim also noted concerns with the way the transactions were handled by Jerry that led them to become suspicious the situation may be a scam.
Over the course of the following two weeks, an additional eight victims reported very similar circumstances. Each victim reported providing Jerry with deposit/rent money, each with the understanding that the rental would be available for them to move into at the beginning of August 2013.
Some of the victims reported learning of the property for rent on Craigslist.
Based on figures reported by the victims, Jerry accepted in excess of $10,000 in deposits from the eight victims, none of whom have been refunded their money or received access to the rental residence, despite several of them signing a lease agreement.
The investigation revealed that the male identifying himself as Jerry Carpenter, is also known as Jerry Rosenstiel. An Internet search reveals that Jerry is reportedly a long term con man who has been involved in numerous scams over the past several years.
The McMinnville Police Department is seeking information regarding potential additional victims of this investigation and/or information regarding Jerry's whereabouts.
Anyone with information is requested to contact Sgt Cully Desmond or Officer Sam Elliott at the McMinnville Police Department at (503) 434-6500.
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