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The Blotter: Scamming Season 

Bizarre crimes from Charlotte's police files

Wholly Hell Somebody was presumably planning a fancy date night when they shoplifted from a Whole Foods store in the Weddington area of south Charlotte. According to the report, police were called when a suspect perused the aisles of the overpriced grocer then absconded with $1,000 worth of meat, beer, wine and cheese. That sounds like an expensive charcuterie board with the finest meats, cheeses and a mature red blend and local craft brew. But knowing the prices at Whole Foods, it was probably just a six pack of Bud Light, one bottle of Yellow Tail, some deli slices and a block of sharp cheddar.

Upgrading Appliances A string of break-ins occurred in the Wesley Chapel neighborhood in east Charlotte left construction workers steaming mad earlier this month. Per the police report, a development subdivision under construction was hit hard when two GE dishwashers were stolen from unfinished properties. Creative Loafing does not condone theft, but we do recognize the audacity and skill it must've taken to move two large dishwashers in presumably one night. At least someone's dishes are being done. In an unrelated police report, a resident in the University area was also hit by someone on a quest to acquire new household appliances. The victim reported their washing machine, dryer and stove were stolen sometime over the Labor Day weekend. We expect the suspects will be back for the kitchen sink.

Millennial Mugging A 29-year-old man in the south Charlotte area was miffed to learn that he had been robbed recently, and it all happened right under his nose. The man told officers that a suspect asked to borrow the victim's cellphone in order to "text a cousin." When the victim complied, the suspect instead accessed the victim's Venmo account and transferred money to himself and another suspect. By the time he found out about what the suspect had actually done with his phone, the victim was down $1,600 and the suspect was long gone. Another Venmo thief struck in Uptown when a 25-year-old man lent his phone to a suspect who had asked to borrow it. The suspect then went into the victim's Venmo app and transferred some money. The report doesn't specify how much money, but Charlotteans apparently need to learn to secure their shit, so here's this week's Blotter Pro Tip: You can secure your Venmo account through the app, with a separate password than the one that's on your phone. We suggest you do so.

A Taxing Situation In the Eastway area of Charlotte, a 23-year-old woman tried to get a handle on the adult life and get her taxes filed, but only ended up getting taken advantage of. The victim enlisted the help of someone whom she paid to file the paperwork for her earlier in the year. According to the report, she recently received notification that her refund was finally delivered and processed. When the victim reached out to collect her tax refund, the suspect stopped communicating with her. Maybe the IRS will settle this ... in 10 years.

Fore! A woman was cruisin' a little too hard on the Harry James Golf Course in southwest Charlotte last week. According to the police report, the suspect was involved in a single-cart wreck on the course at about 8 a.m. one morning. Whether she hit a divot, bumped into a sand trap, or was just boozin' a little early and hit a tree is unknown to us, as the police report is vague. But let this be a cautionary tale to all of you heading to the course to get a quick nine holes in and work on your swing; learn to drive a golf cart.

Off The Rack Popular high-end chain retailer Nordstrom was hit by one of their own over the course of a year. The retail store's SouthPark Mall location hired the suspect, and between November 2017 to last week, she embezzled $1,160 from the store. However, she didn't just skim from the top of the drawers. According to the police report, the suspect would return merchandise that belonged to the business, then transfer the funds onto gift cards. She would've gotten away with it, too, if it weren't for that meddling loss prevention officer.

Panther Payoff In January 2016, we reported a story about counterfeit Carolina Panthers tickets and how many people were being swindled by criminals trying to make a quick buck or two. In the report, we suggested that Charlotteans get their football tickets from verified resellers such as TicketMaster, StubHub or TicketsNow to avoid the risk of being decieved. One 35-year-old woman in the Uptown area did not heed our warning, as she was tricked out of $1,750 worth of Carolina Panthers tickets. Earlier this summer, she paid the suspect the money, who has still never sent the tickets, which probably never existed in the first place.

Paranoia In one of the most vague reports we've seen, one woman fell right into QAnon-like conspiracy theories after her car caught fire recently. The police report gives no details as to how or why the car caught flame, but only says that "the victim states that she believes that her car caught fire due to someone messing with it." Little does she know that the fire was actually always burning since the world's been turning.

All stories are pulled from police reports at CMPD headquarters. Suspects are innocent until proven guilty.

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