East Point man finds $8K in his mailbox, learns it was sent by 90-year-old scam victim

Darrius Thomas found more than $8,000 in cash inside a mailbox at his vacant rental home last month.
Darrius Thomas found more than $8,000 in cash inside a mailbox at his vacant rental home last month.

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

When a man looked inside the mailbox of his vacant rental home in East Point last month, he found quite a surprise: more than $8,000 in cash.

Instead of keeping it, he took it to police, who discovered the person who sent the expensive envelope was the victim of a scam, Channel 2 Action News reported.

Scammers called a 90-year-old woman from Wisconsin several times and told that her grandson needed the cash to get out of jail and pay for other expenses, Channel 2 reported. In total, she sent $54,600 in cash to multiple locations, including the house in East Point.

RELATED: Marietta man accused of 'elaborate phone scam scheme' in Connecticut

Darrius Thomas, the man who found the cash, told the news station that he bought the home in 2017 and usually rented it out to tenants. When he opened the mailbox in December, he was welcomed by a calendar full of Ben Franklins.

“One hundred dollar bills. It was nothing but $100 bills,” Thomas said. “Each page of the calendar had $100 bills lined in it.”

East Point police Capt. Allyn Glover said the man’s reaction to the cash was even more surprising.

“He didn’t hesitate. Mr. Thomas came up and turned the money in,” Glover told Channel 2.

By the time police contacted the woman, she had already learned she had been scammed, the news station reported. Her family had contacted her grandson, who was able to clear everything up, but they expected that the cash was long gone.

Glover said the department is in the process of sending it back to the woman.

“This is happening unfortunately all over the country,” he said.

Many others aren’t as lucky.

MORE: Roswell couple scammed out of $500K, tried to buy 220 pounds of gold from Africa

In December, a Roswell couple discovered that a 220-pound gold shipment they ordered from Ghana was a hoax, costing them more than $500,000, AJC.com previously reported.

A month earlier, a University of Georgia student and a Cobb County woman were both scammed out of tens of thousands of dollars in similar Social Security schemes. In total, they lost more than $65,000.

RELATED: 'So darn believable': Cobb woman lost $35K during 11½-hour call with scammers

The FBI told AJC.com that it receives 800 to 1,200 Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) reports each day, about 20 to 25 of which are from Georgia. It's unclear if the Wisconsin woman has filed a report.

The agency said the complaints are analyzed, categorized and bundled with similar cases, if applicable. Those that aren’t investigated remain in their records “for analysis and potential future investigation.”

Read the full story from Channel 2 Action News here.

In other news:

Several neighborhood streets were shut down Thursday after state troopers say a trooper shot and killed a man driving toward him.

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