San Diego man warns of fake check scam

Posted at 1:56 PM, May 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-13 17:11:42-04

A San Diego man is warning others about a scam that could cause years of financial heartache.

Jesse Todd has been on crutches for months and is in need of a little extra cash.

"I was looking for work online, Facebook and Craigslist," Todd said.

He responded to an ad that was looking for people to wrap their cars in Jolt Cola stickers. He thought it was odd, but he applied anyway.

"I haven't seen a Jolt in 20 years," Todd said.

A few days later, he received a check for $2,730. He also got a text message on his phone that told him to deposit the check and wait for more instructions on how to wrap his car.

"I've had payroll checks that looked worse than this so I thought maybe it could be legit," he said.

10News took the questionable check to a bank to see if it was real; bank officials immediately said it was fake.

Calls and emails to the alleged scammer went unanswered.

Check fraud is a federal crime. Even if you unknowingly deposit a fake check, the bank shuts down all of your accounts and you can't open new ones for at least seven years.

"It's scary. I mean, you have to be smart. People are trying to take advantage of people every day," Todd said.