Quick Change Artist Gets Away With Cash In Westlake

quick change

Photo courtesy of Westlake Police Department

WESTLAKE, OH - Westlake PD took a report of a quick change scam just before 6 p.m. on Mon 2/19/18. A male entered the Walgreens at Columbia and Center Ridge Roads and bought some small items. He paid with a $50 bill. When he received his change back he began to ask for different amounts of change for different denominations which quickly became very confusing for a cashier. When all was said and done the male made off with $50 extra dollars. He is unidentified at this time but is described as a heavy set black male in his late 20's, clean shaven with acid washed jeans and a red hoodie. 

On 2/16/18, a caring grandfather received a call from a male pretending to be his grandson.  The “grandson” said that he was in financial trouble and needed the victim to buy $3600 worth of gift cards to Best Buy.  The grandfather, wanting to help out, did this and ended up giving the scammer the account numbers.  When the thief called again the next day attempting to steal more money, an alert family member intervened and contacted police.  The perpetrator had told the grandfather not to tell anyone.  Officers are attempting to follow-up on online purchases made with the gift cards.

On 2/17/18 Westalke Police received reports of an SUV weaving and driving on the berm of I-90.  The suspect vehicle was located at a gas station on Crocker Rd and was stopped.  The operator, a 29 year-old from Cleveland, was incoherent and could not stand up by himself.  After a short interaction with the officers, the male passed out and had to be revived with Narcan.  He was later transported to the hospital and was charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated.  Further charges are pending.  The passenger in the SUV, a 45 year-oldfrom Parma, was arrested for an outstanding warrant through Cleveland PD.


Evidence photo courtesy of Westlake Police Department

On 2/17 a routine traffic stop turned into a felony drug arrest.  The stopped vehicle had 4 occupants.  During the investigation, the officers located both marijuana and suspected cocaine.  When all was said and done, one passenger, a 24yo from Lorain, was arrested and charged with possession of marijuana (POM) and felony possession of 0.3g of cocaine.  The driver of the vehicle, a 21yo out of Lorain, was cited with POM and was released with the other 2 passengers. 

On 2/18 WPD received a call of a possible domestic fight at a hotel on Clemens.  The involved parties left before police arrived but a description of the vehicle was obtained and it was soon stopped.  The male and female in the vehicle denied being involved in a fight but, unfortunately for them, investigation revealed that there was approx.. 4 pounds of marijuana in the vehicle along with packaging materials and other paraphernalia.  Both parties, a 32yo male and 32yo female out of Massillon, OH were charged with drug trafficking.

Throughout the week, several Westlake businesses reported that a male approached one of their employees asking for money.  The suspect would say that he owned a nearby business and locked himself out of it.  The money supposedly would be used to pay for a lock smith and would be repaid the same day.  It appeared that it was the same suspect in each of the instances and officers soon identified him.  Theft Warrants were obtained for the 45-year-old who had a last known address in Highland Hts.  He was arrested later in the week by a neighboring department and will be transferred to Westlake when he is done with his other court appearances.

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