When your personal trainer turns bad (and other tales of theft)

Among reports filed recently were these cases of theft:

A woman reported her personal trainer took off with a computer, jewelry, a number of other electronics, checks and a lot of cash. She said he owes her addition monies totaling just under $10,000.

She thinks he left for California.

700 block of Spalding Drive: A 1993 Chrysler New Yorker was stolen. The victim said he was trying to sell the car and a potential buyer may have taken the keys that were in the car and returned later to steal it.

6200 block of Barfield Road: A business representative reported that an ex-employee apparently made a number of unauthorized withdrawals using company credit and debit cards. The total of money taken exceeds $14,000.

4900 block of Roswell Road: A salon owner said a regular but problematic customer came in and had a “lace wig application treatment” done. The cost was $175. When she was done, the woman said the money was in her car and she would meet the employee there. When the employee went downstairs to get the money, the woman drove off.

(For more information on lace wig applications, go to buylacefrontwigs.com)

500 block of Northridge Crossing: Someone took a power meter from the residence.

8100 block of Colquitt Road: A girl gave her roommate $300 to get her a money order. She hasn’t seen him since.

A cabbie reported he picked up a male on Roberts Drive and took him to Cimarron Pkwy. When he arrived, the man bolted and ran off.

Theft by deception (aka ‘Pigeon drop’)

An 89-year old victim said she was coming out of the Costco on Peachtree-Dunwoody Road when she was approached by a young woman who tapped on her car window and then asked if she dropped a purse. The victim said she hadn’t.

The following is the short version of the sequence of events:

  • Suspect 1 shows a purse with what appears to contain a lot of money.
  • Suspect 1 asks victim to stand by while she finds her boss.
  • Boss (Suspect 2) tells her there is $100,000 in the purse.
  • Boss suggests they each put in cash for “good faith” funds and they will later split the funds three ways.
  • Victim goes to the bank and withdraws $3,200 in cash.
  • Suspect 1 says they will put the purse, with the $100,000 in it, in the victim’s car trunk for safekeeping.
  • Victim gives Suspect 1 the $3,200h.
  • Suspects and victim agree to meet up later.
  • Victim goes home, gets the purse, which is now locked.
  • Victim cuts the purse open and finds that it’s filled with yellow paper.

It’s an old, old scam, but, as you see, still has life. At some point, the victim’s rationalization is overridden by a bit of greed, a little “something-for-nothing” mentality. That is what we call the “hook.”

Suspect 1 said her name was Gwendolyn Wilson. The “boss,” although not seen, was named Mr. Weinstein.

Fraud, forgery and ID theft

A resident reported she received a notice from the DMV that her license was suspended for not appearing in court. She found out that someone used her ID when they received a ticket and never paid the fine.

If this should happen to you, or you’re a victim of any fraud, make a police report and get copies made. Eventually you’ll get it all straightened out, but that report and case number will give you the muscle to get things done. The venue or jurisdiction of identity fraud cases is usually where the victim lives.

A resident said someone accessed his account and wrote about $16,000 in checks on it. He thinks they got his info from his mail.

1100 Hammond Drive: A woman contacted SSDP and said she was contacted via letter about being a mystery shopper. This report isn’t detailed but it says she wired a total of over $3,000 to a Western Union address and then figured out she was scammed. The money was picked up at the Publix on Hammond Drive.

Just be very careful of anything that asks for money up front. Mystery shopping scams can be found all over the Internet.

A restaurant owner said she discovered an employee had been adding tip amounts to existing credit card payments by customers. The tips totaled more than $500.

Burglary task force arrests

Members of the Fulton County Multi-Jurisdictional Burglary Task force in conjunction with Cobb and Gwinnett counties executed a search warrant at a residence in Gwinnett.

We recovered more than 23 stolen appliances, three stolen vehicles, two stolen trailers, a good amount of methamphetamine, scales and several guns.

Three suspects were arrested. The investigation originated in Sandy Springs and was initiated by Det. J.T. Williams. CST assisted in the takedown of two of the suspects. The task force will continue to work with Gwinnett and Cobb counties  in identifying the owners of the stolen property and locating a fourth suspect still outstanding.

Other arrests

Messina Way: A man who was going door to door, selling magazines that nobody buys, was stopped by an officer. He had no permit and was from out of state. He told the officer he was staying at a local hotel, had been dropped off by his boss and was selling magazines to win a trip to Mexico. He was cited for not having a permit and told to leave the area.

It is good that folks call in on these people because, first of all, they don’t have a permit. Secondly, they don’t live local and if they do choose to steal something or rip off the homeowner by selling a fraudulent subscription, they’re hard to find. Third, why give them close-up access to your home?

This doesn’t apply to the Girl Scouts. Just buy the cookies. You don’t want to make them mad.

Officers responded to a call at the Whole Foods parking lot area at Roswell and Hammond. Two men were seen looking into cars. They left there, crossed the street and were doing the same in the City Walk parking lot. The cops located the men walking behind the shopping center on Sandy Springs Place. The men said they were looking for work but couldn’t recall where. One of the men said they applied for work at Lowe’s, but Lowe’s said no one applied during that time.

One of the men had an ID card that was different than the name he gave the officer. The second guy also lied about his name. After checking the various database resources, his true name was found. Both men were arrested for loitering, prowling and giving the cops fake names.

This call came in from someone who saw two men doing something suspicious and acted on it. We love folks like this. Way to go.

Finally, people with issues

Cops responded to 7000 Roswell Road and met with a man who said he and his girlfriend split up and she told him that when he came over to get his clothes, she would have a surprise. When he got there he found his clothes on the lawn in front of the apartment.

They had been drenched in bleach.

25 comments Add your comment

Marcus Graham

February 26th, 2010
11:21 pm

Sandy Springs is still the ‘hood even after the split!

Bobby dee

February 27th, 2010
12:51 am

Credit Card tip scams are common. I leave a cash tip & write “zero” on the tip line on the slip, then write the amount again on the bottom line.


February 27th, 2010
11:55 am

The mean Streets of Sandy Springs, one of the 9th richest areas of the United States. Kind of a Oxymoron. lol

Man Up.

February 27th, 2010
3:12 pm

Grifters Galore!

John Rogers

February 28th, 2010
9:46 pm

Douglasville is the hood police chief Chris Womack Is a poster child for incompetence. How can we get ride of him and get a real crime fighter for Douglasville.

Live from Riverdale

March 1st, 2010
7:35 am

I love livin in Riverdale.


March 1st, 2010
8:31 am

1.) In 1992 a “magazine salesman” tried to force his way into my home (I was out of town) after my wife told him no thanks. She managed to get the door closed and called the police. This was at 8pm. The police couldn’t find the salesman.

2.) 5 years ago 2 “magazine salesmen” showed up at my house late in the afternoon. My wife told them no thanks. The very next day my house was broken into. 2+2=4.

Moral of the post: CALL THE POLICE if these scam artists show up at your door!


March 1st, 2010
12:26 pm

Can you provide the name of the restaurant where the employee was adding to the credit card tip. I might need to stop by the ATM.


March 1st, 2010
1:17 pm

Note that while mystery shopping scams abound, there are many, many legitimate mystery shopping companies (which will NEVER ask you for money). I have shopped for over 200 (yes, two hundred) mystery shopping companies and never once had a problem. Check them out with the MSPA organization before signing on to be sure it’s a legitimate company. (You might sometimes go out of pocket; for example, I have done many high-end restaurant shops and the meal is reimbursed after submission of the report.)

I just wanted to share that not all mystery shopping deals are scams! I loved that industry and made very good money during my secret-shopping years!

Jared Nichols

March 1st, 2010
1:50 pm

I agree completely with you John. Douglasville Police Chief Chief Chris Womack has to be the most incompetent Police Chief in the United States. Its a crying shame that Mickey Thompson Mayor of Douglasville would do this to the city. Douglasville Mayor Mickey Thompson, should be voted out of office for allowing Douglasville Chief of Police Chris Womack to absolutely destroy the city. Look at crime rates are through the roof. The Douglasville chamber of commerce is smaller. Home values are down. Chris Womack in his do nothing role as Chief of Police has destroyed the city of Douglasville. I know everyone likes Mickey Thompson; however, if he doesn’t fire Chris Womack he needs voted out of office. Lets restore our city and get rid of Douglasville Chief of Police Chris Womack.

Bite Me

March 1st, 2010
5:50 pm

And to think that Sandy Springs USED to be a nice place!


March 1st, 2010
10:30 pm

“A restaurant owner said she discovered an employee had been adding tip amounts to existing credit card payments by customers. The tips totaled more than $500.”

This is why I manually enter credit card slips into my finance program and reconcile the credit card statements every month. 2 waiters/waitresses at separate restaurants have attempted to do this to me. After my letters to the credit card company and the headquarters of the restaurants involved, both were fired. Me: 2, crooks: 0


March 2nd, 2010
8:34 am

Bleach! Ahhh! She took the old game up a notch! Hmm, following the old 25-year fashion returns rule, bleached/stonewashed jeans should come back in style any minute now. Oh, I’m sorry, that’s not gonna happen. Well, maybe he can work part time as a painter in his new white clothes.

VoiceOf Reason

March 2nd, 2010
11:32 am

Way to go Bobby dee, I do that too. And not just at sit down restaurants, I do it everywhere they use receipts with the tip option. EVERYWHERE!


March 2nd, 2010
3:36 pm

Am I reading these comments right, or are people actually saying these crimes don’t make Sandy Springs safe anymore???……HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!

Tell ya what, whiners: When SS starts having 1-2 murders a night, and Lt. Rose loses his humor and wit, THEN I’ll buy the “Sandy Springs isn’t safe anymore” line.

BTW, Lt. Rose: I noticed one of your co-workers lives in Coweta County (or perhaps, Meriwether). That’s got to be a guy who loves his job to want to drive that far everyday (I see this officer at least once a week on the road).

Lt. Steve

March 2nd, 2010
8:11 pm

Boys and girls: Every place, big and small has crime. The more you know the better you are if you can take a hint and do something about it. There are no zero-crime towns. It doesn’t mean you can be normal and have fun. Just know things. Be happy and carry a gun.


March 3rd, 2010
9:14 am

The crooks, and their angles, just keep comin’. Thanks, Steve, for keeping us informed.

The Truth about Cops

March 3rd, 2010
1:50 pm

“This is why I manually enter credit card slips into my finance program and reconcile the credit card statements every month. 2 waiters/waitresses at separate restaurants have attempted to do this to me. After my letters to the credit card company and the headquarters of the restaurants involved, both were fired. Me: 2, crooks: 0″

I bet you continue to pay your other waiters 2 dollars an hour- legal theft we can all feel good about.

Restaurant owners/management are true scum of the earth.

Truth is, much less of these crimes will occur when the Sandy Springs PD decides to spent less time asleep in the Publix parking lot and more time, you know, doing there jobs.

I bet they all manage to get that quota filled dolling out traffic tickets while these crimes occur though.


March 3rd, 2010
7:32 pm


I think you misinterpreted this statement from StJ;
“This is why I manually enter credit card slips into my finance program and reconcile the credit card statements every month. 2 waiters/waitresses at separate restaurants have attempted to do this to me. After my letters to the credit card company and the headquarters of the restaurants involved, both were fired. Me: 2, crooks: 0″

I think StJ meant they keep track of credit card expenditures in their home finance spread sheet and then when the bill comes in, they double check the spread sheet against the bill. That way they know what they spent, and where.

Answer Me This

March 4th, 2010
6:58 am

Things haven’t changed much here.

Chief Chris Womack

March 4th, 2010
8:45 am

To a unhappy citizen ” John Rogers” please feel free to come by the Douglasville Police Department and speak with me about the way wethe (police department) are fighting crime. I will be happy to here your ideas on how we can make are city safer for all of our citizens. Respectfully, Chief Chris Womack

Get It Right

March 4th, 2010
8:46 am

SSPD might like being told about people wandering around parking lots, but Deklab County doesn’t. We’ve twice seen such folk in our parking lot near Panola Rd, Miller Rd. and the cops won’t come by. There have been 3-4 cars broken into and the cops will not come out to investigate. You call, leave a number and hope a detective will contact you to get information for a “report” that you can take to the insurance company.

Atlanta Gal

March 4th, 2010
5:07 pm

People – please spell check your posts before you post them. It doesn’t do your cause any good if you come across like a stupid person!


March 5th, 2010
7:44 am

I agree with you Atlanta Gal – we’ve got some idiots who don’t know how to spell or construct sentences who are trying to give advice!

@The Truth about Cops (3/3 @ 1:50):
1) “decides to spent less time” – should be SPEND, not SPENT
2) “doing there jobs” – should be THEIR, not THERE
3) you couldn’t even figure out who your quote was directed to!

@Chief Chris Womack (3/4 @ 8:45):
1) “the way wethe” – should be WE, not WETHE
2) “to here your ideas” – should be HEAR, not HERE
3) “can make are city” – should be OUR, not ARE

And these are not simple typos – they’re items that come from a lack of knowledge/education. Pitiful.


March 5th, 2010
2:45 pm

@ professor, GET A LIFE, what are you the spell check and grammer police? Got nothing better to do than belittle people for their mistakes? You are showing your stupidity because no one cares about your corrections.