Velora Dominguez and her brother say they fell victim to this man, who told them a story of a tragic circumstance and asked for money / Source: KFDA
AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) -
People across the Panhandle say their kindness is being taken advantage of by a single man with a story that tugs at your heartstrings.
The same man has apparently scammed people out of thousands of dollars, who say they are now learning a lesson that being nice doesn't always pay off.
The story supposedly goes like this: The gentleman knocks on your door and tells you his parents have been in a terrible car accident, and he now needs money to help them. He says whatever money you loan -- $20 or $200 -- will be paid back in full.
Do you do it, or not?
The details may actually be a very unfortunate circumstance for someone looking for a hand. But those who helped this particular man say he never showed back up.
At least, he never showed up again to repay the loan.
Velora Dominguez and her brother say they fell victim last year. Despite them giving the man whatever they could, they never saw the man come back around -- until last Friday night. Armed with the same story, Dominguez said the man apparently did not remember he had already been to her home.
"We waited all night long...he never came back with the money," Dominguez said.
Dominguez is not the only victim.
Many people with similar interactions have taken to the internet to get the word out and share pictures they captured of the beggar. People say there is no part of town off limits and that he's been doing it for years.
Dominguez said the man even took money from her neighbor with dementia.
"Everybody has pictures of him, pictures of his suburban...It's gone viral, you know. But it's important for the community to watch out for each other, watch out for your neighbors."
Unfortunately, online shaming and a verbal word of caution to others are the only consequences of his current actions. The Amarillo Police Department says if the money was exchanged willingly, and without anything in writing, only a few things can be done.
However, police are doing their part to ensure those few things are carried out.
"When you agree to give someone money for payment in the future you're getting into a civil contract with them and it's not a criminal matter," officer Jeb Hilton said. "We're not pursuing this guy, he's not really breaking the law by going up and asking somebody for a loan at this point, whenever you do pay him the money, it's not a criminal deal because you're doing that out of your own good."