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Kovaks Street Scam Forums • View topic - You Pity, You Give (NYC & Paris)

You Pity, You Give (NYC & Paris)

Wherever you are, wherever it happened, share your scam story here.

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You Pity, You Give (NYC & Paris)

Postby KOVAKS on Wed Sep 17, 2008 9:32 pm

Contributed by Andria Schwortz on 10 May 2005:

I'm not sure if you're still posting new street scams, but here's two I've been witness to in New York City, where I grew up. No theft was involved in either, just deceit to get a pitying person's money.

I was travelling on the 7 train with one of my friends when, a small man dressed in dirty brown clothes entered the train car. He told everyone on the car that he was down on his luck and was staying at a local YMCA and just needed a little help paying for the room, just for the night. He even held up his room key to show us that he was legitimate--yeah right! I was of course skeptical, but my friend gave him a few dollars despite my warnings that it could be a scam with someone else stealing my friend's wallet. Thankfully no one did take his wallet, but a few months later I saw the same man on the same train with the same story--he needed a few dollars to stay at the YMCA for JUST ONE NIGHT.

The second case was a black man I frequently see in Grand Central Station. He has no legs, and moves about on his hands while somehow also carrying a cup for donations. Well, when he's not in Grand Central or making his way down the length of the 6 train, he's in the front car in a wheel chair with his girlfriend wearing more gold chains than Mr. T. I've never otherwise noticed the woman, so I think the scam is only voluntary donations and no theft. It's a shame that this man, who is both smart and physically capable of integrating into society, instead chooses to take advantage of others and give people with disabilities a bad reputation.

Ooh, and I just remembered another one! This one was in Paris, France, in Motmartre, at the bottom of the trolley up to Sacre Coeur. I was there with another woman and two men, and we came down the stairs on foot just after dusk.

At the bottom, a few black men approached myself and my girlfriend, saying they were selling some sort of holy fake- flowers to pin on your shirt. We waved them away and they quickly retreated, but then I noticed that my guy-friends were no longer beside us.

I spun around and my friends were surrounded by some 4-8 very tall black men. I wasn't sure what was going on, but they looked somewhat menacing and my friends were holding up their hands in front of them in non-threatening gestures, as though trying to placate the strange men. I'm not that big a woman, but when my friends are threatened I get really angry. I plowed right through the strangers and grabbed my friends' arms and dragged them out. I might've yelled something at the scammers, I don't remember, but they backed off immediately.

Thinking back on the incident, I'm not sure whether the strangers were going to steal my friends' money, or simply indimidate them into giving more money. But I find it amusing that these big men were threatening my passive male friends, and it took an angry girl to scare them off! I think all it takes is an attitude that you won't let them bilk you, and the con artists will back off.
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Re: You Pity, You Give (NYC & Paris)

Postby maryparks on Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:29 am

It is amazing what thieves will do. It just seems to be getting worse and worse these days!
Scarey Times!!!!!!
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