July 23, 2015

Warning: attempted scam at bars reported

Sheriff’s detectives want to warn bar owners and bartenders in particular about two men attempting to use Visa gift cards to scam cash.

Over the weekend, two men went into at least two bars in the Marathon area – and perhaps more if rumors turn out to be true. The men ordered a couple of drinks. When it came time to pay, they asked to pay with a gift card. Instead of just paying the amount owed, the men asked the bartenders to charge a larger amount to the card – almost two hundred dollars more. They offered some of the cash as a large tip to the bartender taking the rest of the cash for themselves.

One bar refused the deal and avoided any loss; a second bar accepted the deal. They are out several hundred dollars because the gift card turned out to be fraudulent.

Anyone with information about this should contact the Sheriff’s Office at 305-289-2351. Callers may also contact Crime Stoppers of the Florida Keys. Tipsters can remain anonymous and, if a tip leads to an arrest in the case, the caller would be eligible for a cash reward. The Crime Stoppers hot line number is 1-800-346-TIPS. Tips may also be submitted on line at www.tipsubmit.com or via a text message to 274637 using the keyword TIP136.

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