Edmonton man falls victim to online car scam
An Edmonton man is out $10,000 after he fell victim to an online car scam. Dustin Stone was trying to buy a car he found online, but when he met with the seller, the suspect grabbed his cash and took off, leaving him with no car and no money.
Stone says he found an ad on Kijiji for a 2011 Ford Fusion. He arranged to meet with the seller and had the vehicle inspected. He even ran the serial number at a registry.
"I go and do the VIN check...everything comes back good," he said.
But when he met with the seller again to exchange cash for the car, everything went wrong. Stone says the man selling the car took his money and drove off, speeding through the streets of Stony Plain.
"He goes in, jumps into the vehicle, starts driving right through here, going through that parking lot -- so we started chasing after him," Stone said.
"It felt like I just lost everything. I'm sitting there shocked and depression, I'm sitting in the back seat my head drops to the floor," he added.
But Stone and his family followed the suspect into Spruce Grove, who eventually parked at a Superstore.
Stone says that is when he confronted the suspect, chasing him down as he entered the store. But the man managed to escape again, getting back into the vehicle and driving away.
"He took off that way and I like an idiot followed him. And you couldn't keep up. No I couldn't keep up he was going way too fast," said Stone's aunt, Sandra Rao.
Police are now trying to track down the suspect, confirming the vehicle involved in the scam was rental, but it hadn't been reported as stolen.
Officers now worry others could fall victim to the same scam.
"It's apparent that yes this could very well happen again and the general public needs to be aware," said Cpl. Donald Price with Spruce Grove RCMP.
Police are also telling consumers to be weary of warning signs, including when a price seems too good to be true and the seller wants cash.
"I lost everything. I lost all my money and I don't want that to happen to somebody else," said Stone.
The suspect is described as:
- Caucasian with tanned skin
- Dark Hair
- 180-190 pounds
- Was last seen wearing a black shirt, jeans and sunglasses.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.
With files from Scott Roberts